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Re: Wait a Second



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Jonah, that’s exactly the question Byron York delves into this morning on a little website called National Review Online.

Wait a Second



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For six months the California election was, according to Democrats, a “hostile takeover by the radical right.” It was a conspiracy of a small bunch of zealots aiming to unseat a democratically elected governor. Now, overnight, it’s an example of widespread popular discontent? How does that work?

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Re: Nomenclature



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Interesting couple of leader page articles (LPAs) in the London Telegraph
this morning. In one, our own Michael Barone muses on whether the
California result has any lessons for Tony Blair. He notes, in passing,
that it is unlikely the Tory party will come up with an action-man superhero
candidate like Schwarzenegger. In the other LPA, Boris Johnson, Tory MP and
editor of the Tory Spectator, comments that Sir Sean Connery would make a
great Tory (Sir Sean’s current allegiance is to the Scottish Nationalist
Party). He then drops a large hint that Sir Sean is an avid reader of the
Spectator. Hmmm.

Web Briefing: January 30, 2015

Re: Nomenclature



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Rick: I suggest “coots.”

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Turkish Outrage



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Ralph Peters comes down hard on Turkish troops in Iraq:


Bush’s desire for Turkish forces is craven. Hoping to reduce U.S. troop commitments as an election looms, he verges on throwing away the practical and moral achievements won with our soldiers’ blood.

His actions will backfire at home as surely as they will in Iraq. A Turkish presence will make things worse, not better.

I Love



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Golden Gate Ridge



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Now that the California election is over, our Secretary of Homeland Security, Tom Ridge, should announce the administration’s take on Gray Davis’s decision to sign a bill allowing illegal aliens to obtain drivers licences. Ridge couldn’t have spoken out before now, or at least not easily: The White House would have been accused of meddling in California’s election and the controversy would have shifted away from the actions of Davis and toward the behavior of the administration. But that would not be true now. If the integrity of identity documents are an important part of defending the homeland, then the California decision must be reversed–and Tom Ridge should say so. People would believe him. The polls are already on his side. How hard could it be? We’ll have to intrepret silence as an endorsement of what Davis did.

Holy Cow!



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Attendees at the gathering of conservative Episcopalians here in Dallas heard a surprise greeting sent to the convention Wednesday from none other than Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, the Vatican’s chief doctrinal official. It’s buried in the ABC story I’ve linked to, but this is very big. It shows that at the highest levels, the Roman Catholic leadership is showing solidarity with the conservative Anglicans. It’s a big ecumenical back of the hand to American Episcopal leaders who have ratified the ordination of the gay bishop. Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, is said to have politely been read the riot act by top Vatican officials last week, and told that if the consecration of Gene Robinson, the gay American bishop, is allowed to stand, relations between the Anglican Communion and Rome will be in trouble. The conservative Episcopalians here are on fire, and it’s going to be amazing to see what happens in England next week when the Archbishop meets with Anglican prelates from around the world. The Africans and others have already told him they’re having none of Bishop Robinson and the liberal American church that ratified his election.

Good Point, Tim



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but let’s not overlook the possibility that Sullivan’s made an innocent mistake.

Marriage and Congress



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Conservatives in Congress are unsure whether to push ahead with a Federal Marriage Amendment, or what form that amendment should take if they do. One alternative approach that is being discussed is that of Rep. John Hostettler. He would strip the federal courts of jurisdiction over challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act. That 1996 both defines marriage as heterosexual for the purposes of federal law and allows states not to recognize other states’ same-sex marriages.

I’m sympathetic to Hostettler’s bill because it would focus narrowly on the dangers of judicial abuse rather than also limit state legislatures’ freedom of action (as the FMA would). But the bill leaves judges so much running room that it’s hard to see what it would accomplish. The Supreme Court could order states to recognize same-sex marriage under any one of several constitutional theories; neither DoMA nor this protection of it would block the court. State courts in all 50 states could impose same-sex marriage, too, and the bill wouldn’t block them. If the idea is to ensure that same-sex marriage comes only to states that choose it democratically, Hostettler’s bill doesn’t do it.

Sullivan’s Playing Games



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Jonah, I’ll let Ramesh or Stanley take on each goofy point where Sullivan compares gays to blacks, murderers on Death Row, and in an odd overgeneralization, “single people without family support.” But he is playing fast and loose with the USA Today poll, which he says “found that 67 percent of the 18-29 age group believe that gay marriage would benefit society.” USA Today actually reported that
“67% of those ages 18 to 29 and 53% of those ages 30 to 49 say gay unions would have no harmful effect or might make society better.” In the overall poll, only ten percent of respondents say it would “make society better.” Everyone else is in the “no effect” camp.

“Yes” For The $87 Billion



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In the issue of NR just going to bed, NR editorializes on the Iraq bill. Read it here. (Hint: Steve Moore and Rep. Feeney won’t be fans.)

Maybe There’s Nothing Left to Say?



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I’m surprised by the radio silence around here on Sullivan’s Wall Street Journal essay on gay marriage. Maybe’s there’s no point in my repeating myself either, but I do find the essential point of Sullivan’s argument quite compelling, even if I don’t endorse gay marriage. Providing no social space for monogamous relationships among same sex couples while at the same time condemning homosexual promiscuity strikes me as not only an unfair Catch-22 but misguided on a number of practical fronts. But again, we’ve been through all of this already.

Shorty



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I have gotten many wonderful e-mails about my column on the movie “Shorty.” Here is one: “My son has Down Syndrome. He is eight years old, is in regular school,takes the same tests as all his classmates, and out performs many of his `typical’ classmates. He plays soccer, basketball and T-ball. He is the most outgoing and lovable child in the world. He has had health problems in the past, but overcame every one of them. When he was two and a half years old, we had him at the doctors for a well visit. After the exam was over one of the nurses became fascinated with him. She asked me if I would mind if she called her daughter to come meet my son. I said of course she could meet him. Her daughter and future son in law came over and spent about an hour with my son, they were amazed at how smart and funny and just cool he was. They left and we went home. Later we found out that her daughter was pregnant with a Down Syndrome child, and after meeting my son decided to keep the child. They moved away before I could find out if they were glad they did. I don’t know what happened or if they are happy, but I can only hope they are as happy as our family is. I wish everyone could meet my son, he truly touches the hearts of almost everyone he meets.”

However....



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The entire Goldberg family unit (minus Cosmo) will be going on the NR Cruise in November. You could sign up for that and meet the Fair Jessica and Lucy the Wonderbaby (See the link on the bottom of left of the homepage, I can’t get a url to work in the Corner).

Speech Delayed



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I was supposed to give a speech at Davidson College in North Carolina in November. It’s been postponed because of some sort of electrical something-or-other until the Spring. Just an FYI for those I told to come check it out. As of now, I have no open-to-the-public speeches scheduled this fall. Of course, some of you deep-pocketed big-shots out there could change that.

Surprising Feedback



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So far the response from readers to today’s G-File has been interestingly mixed. Many liked it, many think I’m flat-out wrong. Quite a few think I’m a prude of some kind for my description of Schwarzenegger’s past behavior. One guy in full spin-denial angrily asked me if I ever “touched” a woman’s breast without “asking for permission first” — which is a bit of a distortion. But most of all, I get the sense that a lot of people wanted me to do something more ra-ra for Ahnold. That’s cool. It’s a good thing to defy the expectations of your readers from time to time. But, the next time one of you guys want to send me an email calling me a shill for the GOP, please think twice. Also, I am fully prepared to become rah-rah for Arnold if he turns out to be a good governor. He apologized and he got elected so he gets a fresh start in my eyes.

Nomenclature



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I have made the point before, but I will make it again, since Andrew Sullivan persists in calling Schwarzenegger an Eagle–his name for patriotic, fiscally conservative, social liberals. This is a flatfooted creature for an American political bestiary. There is no trace of mockery, as there is in Thomas Nast’s donkeys and elephants (and Nast was a Republican). Gee, Andrew, why not call your soulmates Kings of the Jungle, or Unicorns, or Thrones, Dominions and Powers?

More Prop 54



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I am still not saying it is enough to sway the tally a great deal, but I’m getting a lot of these emails now:


EEEk! I just realized that my husband marked our sample ballots just that way, NO on 54, and that’s how I voted, because I didn’t take time to look at it…I’m sure that’s what he was thinking, that we were voting against the classification by race, etc…..

Completely ashamed and embarrassed in CA

From The Source



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Still no apology or defense or even explanation for Richard Just’s knee-jerk liberal racialism. But I did get this from Kenneth Calvert, the headmaster of Hillsdale Academy:


Jonah,

Thank you for defending us in the recent hubub surrounding our National Review advert. It is interesting that our minority population at the Academy is 12% compared to 1% in the local, Hillsdale public schools. The “minorities” in Hillsdale County obviously choose us because of the rigor we provide rather than the condescending, pandering, liberal gibberish provided by those who thought our advertisement was too “white.”

Best,
Ken Calvert
Headmaster

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