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From The “Not a Good Sign” File


On the home page of Microsoft’s popular Web-mail program Hotmail, there is a link to an article which asks, “Is monogamy a joke
these days?”

Fortunately the article ends up
supporting monogamy, though without more support than the claim that “most of us
cling to romantic notions of finding The One and being linked forever and
exclusively with a soul mate.” This is typical, I think, of much popular
opinion about marriage and family life: “Yes, I believe this, but I can’t really
explain why.”

Gore in 04?



Terror Futures


Eli Lehrer comes to the rescue.

Web Briefing: September 15, 2014

Arnold Really Out?


Schwarzenegger out of California recall race

LOS ANGELES (CNN) — Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger will not run for California’s governor as part of the October vote on whether to recall incumbent Gov. Gray Davis, state Republican sources said Wednesday.

Schwarzenegger is expected to back Richard Riordan, a former Los Angeles mayor who unsuccessfully sought the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2002. Riordan said yesterday that he would not run if the star of the Terminator movies, who turned 56 on Wednesday, entered the race.

Davis faces an Oct. 7 recall vote that could unseat him. Voters will pick a successor as part of the same ballot.

The recall drive has been led by Rep. Darrell Issa, who hopes to replace Davis as the state’s next governor. Bill Simon — who narrowly lost to Davis in the 2002 election — and state Sen. Tom McClintock also are likely GOP candidates.

Political gadfly Arianna Huffington has said she is considering running as an independent.

– CNN Political Editor John Mercurio in Washington contributed to this report.


More Catholic Than The Pope


Israeli’s ambassador to the U.N. has some issues doing Fox–he says the anchors are more pro-Israel than he is, according to this blogsite. (Via webmaster Aaron Bailey)

Darpa Futures


A reader concurs:

I’ve been waiting for someone from NRO to address this news item. The media has (like Congress) reflexively rejected the futures market. I find this so depressing. I have my own view on the “whether” question concerning this proposed marketplace and I respect the fact that many have a differing view, but I’d like to intelligently debate it before it gets dismissed!!!

None of the issues raised (which are soooo interesting) were ever discussed. What a shame. Hopefully you or someone on NRO can dedicate some good thought to this.

Is the pricing of a life insurance contract any less morbid/moral than the pricing of an assassination? Why/why not? Why is one so accepted and the other denounced?

If terrorists profiting from their attacks is the most disgusting possible outcome from an events futures market, how can you not accuse all financial markets of the same potential atrocity? If Al Qaeda wanted to profit from its attacks it could have shorted anything in any stock market in the world on September 10th.

I don’t know if my answers to these questions are the ‘right’ answers for us or the civilized world, but I sure would like to hear some intelligent discourse on the matter.

Tapper’s Liberal Bias


Jake Tapper’s debut on ABC was not great evidence to back up his claim he could be an objective reporter.

Not to Be Overlooked


No U.S. Servicemen have been killed in the last 24 hours (knock on wood). This is very good news for several reasons. First, and most obvious, it’s always good news when our troops don’t get hurt. Second, the “resistance” knows that there is a huge PR value in killing at least one American every day. The “daily toll” story line is their greatest asset. Third, no US troops have been killed since Saddam’s tape came out confirming that Uday and Qusay are dead. According to various broadcasts, this confirmed for millions of skeptical Iraqis that the pig boys were really dead. Saddam (or his sound alike) were clearly hoping their deaths would inspire more “martyrs” but maybe it had the opposite effect.

10:30 Am


A GWB Rose Garden press conference

Delay: The Full Speech


Selective Legitimacy


And, by the way, what in the world is wrong with “selective legitimacy” in the first place? We practive selective legitimacy in every sphere of life, don’t we. We decide as a society and express through our laws the view that some people should be permitted to run for President (over 35 year-old, non-felon, native US citizens), we selectively decide who can vote (though we’re probably not strict enough here), we selectively decide who can serve in the armed forces, who can drive a car, and so on and so on. The issue isn’t selectivity. The issue is the criteria by which we make those selections. This strikes me as similar to those who denounce “censorship” but don’t mind the rules preventing hardcore porn from appearing on family time broadcast television.

Good Riddance


Foday Sankoh, the former leader of Sierra Leone’s Revolutionary United Front, is dead.

Save The Deviants!


Nick – I largely agree with you. Look at the backlash in the polls on the gay stuff, the society is recoiling from what it sees as a rush to mainstreaming. This is just one more indication of why we shouldn’t rely on the courts for issues like this.

But what I would add is that I’d have a lot more respect for Levine’s position if I believed her and her kind when they say they want to privatize all social institutions. But, the fact is that if the private sector (aka the civil society) — churches, schools, neighborhoods — started to stigmatize club crawlers and drag queens, the sexual liberationists would claim that the state must step in and stop the private sector “oppressors.” They would demand that the St. Patrick’s Day Parade be forced to allow transgender biker sluts or whatever. They would insist that local merchants couldn’t refuse to hire drag queens. In other words, I just don’t believe many on the liberationist left when they say they want the government to “get out” of the “selective legitimacy” business. What they want is for the government to save the deviants from the application of selective legitimacy wherever it rears its judgmental head. I know that Charles Murray’s form of libertarianism allows for the Burkean “little platoons” to apply selective legitimacy when necessary.

Delay to Knesset


I come to you–in the midst a great global conflict against evil–with a simple message: “Be Not Afraid.”

I do not say this as a foreigner, cavalier in my estimation of the dangers that surround you.

Instead, I say it as an ally, in spite of the terrifying predators who threaten all free nations, especially Israel.

My country is not ignorant, nor are we indifferent to your struggle.

We know our victory in the war on terror depends on Israel’s survival.

And we know Israel’s survival depends on the willingness of free nations–especially our own–to stand by all endangered democracies in their time of need.

We hear your voice cry out in the desert, and we will never leave your side.

Because freedom and terrorism cannot coexist.

Terrorism cannot be negotiated away or pacified.
Terrorism will either destroy free nations, or free nations will destroy it.

Freedom and terrorism will struggle–good and evil–until the battle is

These are the terms Providence has put before the United States, Israel, and
the rest of the civilized world.

They are stark, and they are final.

More to come…

The “Terror” Market


Hey look, I think this terror market stuff was a dumb idea politically, bureaucratically, and diplomatically. But I wish Democrats and me-too Republicans and the media generally would stop talking about it as if it is transparently idiotic scientifically. I listened to an NPR report this morning that made the idea sound as dumb as making aircraft carriers out of twine and water-soluable glue. First of all, the guys at DARPA are very, very smart. Second, economists, mathemeticians, statisticians etc all agree that markets are very clever at figuring stuff out that individuals cannot. I’m not saying I think this is a great scientific idea, I am saying that I don’t know enough to dismiss it as scientifically stupid on its face. And, I don’t think many of these Senators or talking heads know enough either.

Re Rebuffing The Saudis


Rich – Isn’t it possible this is all b.s.? I mean the Saudis need some cover, so they publicly beg the Bush Administration to release the 28 pages to clear their “good name” but privately ask them to keep it quiet. I’m not a big conspiracy theorist, but this does sound pretty consistent with how the Saudis operate.

“Opprobrium to Deviants”


Provocative piece in the Village Voice from Judith Levine on gay marriage not being radical enough. Levine says marriage is an institution whose job is, in part, to enable society “to hand out opprobrium to deviants.” Levine doesn’t like that, and she frets that allowing monogamous gay men and women to wed “may stall the achievement of real sexual freedom and social equality for everyone.”

But marriage—forget the “gay” for a moment—is intrinsically conservative. It does not just normalize, it requires normality as the ticket in. Assimilating another “virtually normal” constituency, namely monogamous, long-term, homosexual couples, marriage pushes the queerer queers of all sexual persuasions—drag queens, club-crawlers, polyamorists, even ordinary single mothers or teenage lovers—further to the margins. “Marriage sanctifies some couples at the expense of others,” wrote cultural critic Michael Warner. “It is selective legitimacy.”

Levine is clearly taking a cheap shot at Andrew Sullivan (author of Virtually Normal) here. As I read her, Levine thinks the state should get out of this “selective legitimacy” business altogether. That’s a recognizable libertarian position. It’s been a few years since I read Charles Murray’s book on libertarianism, so I can’t remember if he tackles this question of the state and marriage. Human nature being what it is, my hunch is such a radical move by the state would leave an uncomfortable societal vacuum; one that organized religions and other social institutions would fill and thus assume greater legitimacy and potency in public life. We can debate the merits of such a development, but I wonder, is that really what Levine wants?

Gov. Arnold?


Reports have indicated that Arnold Schwartzenegger is “leaning against” running for governor. I’m starting to feel disappointed. As a conservative, I don’t exactly relish the prospect of a liberal Republican as California’s standard bearer–but I do think Arnold might very well defeat Davis and believe the whole thing would be a hoot to watch. Also, I’m less convinced than many that former LA mayor Richard Riordan is a good alternative. He’s not a fantastic campaigner and I’m not sure he would do well in the klieg-light scrutiny of the full California media. My favorite candidate probably would be state senator Tom McClintock, a whip-smart conservative. The best candidate might be Bill Jones, the former secretary of state who failed to secure the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2002. In my view, he’s the one Republican who could have beat Davis last November. Looks like he’s not interested in another try. Too bad more of us on the Right didn’t appreciate him when he was actually up for the job.



More than a few sources who have seen the speech say it is good stuff. FNC definitely covering it, 8amish EST Wed.

Re: Backlash


Nevermind. Glaad says it’s all The Corner’s fault (kinda).


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