The People of Antijudea

George Will makes two vital points in one paragraph. The first I consider lost amid the chatter of popular rhetoric:

The creation of Israel did not involve the destruction of a Palestinian state, there having been no such state since the Romans arrived.

The Palestinian identity is a recent invention. Yes, there has been that patch of earth sometimes called Palestine (when it wasn’t called Judea or Israel). But the people who lived there were simply arabs, or Egyptians and Jordanians if they needed a political label.

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Are You Talkin’ to Me?

There’s post at Chicago Boyz highlighting the contradictions between leftoid rhetoric and the details of leftoid policy. They say they want to tax the rich and protect the middle class, but can’t define who is in which group. Is a small business owner who shows $200K of revenue rich or middle class?

What really caught my eye were a couple of campaign-worthy slogans for Tea Partiers:

    • Shouldn’t “tax cuts” be distributed to those who pay taxes?

    • Let the tax rates go back to the Clinton administration rates but let’s also go back to the number of government employees of the Clinton period.

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Another 600 Feet

I’ve seen several posts about all the other things within 600 feet of the WTC site. Strip bars, fast food joints, and pretty much eveything a big city offers. The point of the posts, I think, is to counter the notion that the proposed Hamasque site is sacred ground. If there are so many vices so close, how sacred can that spot be?

The counter-counter fielded by the Hamasque opponents is that the building in question was struck by a piece of one the planes. That damage somehow anointed the structure with socio-cultural holiness.

I see merit in both points. But I am not persuaded. On one hand, we’ve got the beginnings of a “George Washington slept here” farce. And we open ourselves to phony relics from “the one True jetliner”. Yet, the surrounding vices only increase the importance of holding some places sacred. If we promised to Never Forget, we do have to be on guard against the encroachment of the mundane.

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Sorry, Gramps, We Owe You Nothing

It seems fair to say that there is a commonly-held belief that the U.S. Government has an obligation to make Social Security payment to those who paid into the program for decades. The benefits are part of contract between workers and the Feds that help ensure nobody has to retire to live on dog food.

Further, there’s a commonly-held idea that there is a Trust Fund, where all those worker payments are being held so there will be money to pay retirees. The promise of a trust fund is probably less trusted by the public, but they still think that they’re owed something from whatever Congress hasn’t already lifted from the trust fund cookie jar.

Well, there is a trust fund, but the cookie jar is full of empty promises instead of genuine savings:

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Above the People

Commenter “The Den Mother” at Neo-neocon pens my next T-shirt idea:

When you lie to Congress, it’s perjury.

When Congress lies to you, it’s campaigning.

Har!

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Christ the Warrior

Given this line of the Gospel, I wonder if the common conception of Jesus Christ is wrong:

Do you think that I came to bring peace on earth? Not at all, I tell you, but rather division!

That’s J.C. speaking, in Luke 12:51.

Why are so many Christians, pseudo-Christians, and political Christians so focused on achieving Peace on Earth?

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Fujichrome? F*ck that sh!t. Tri-X 400!

Dennis Hopper was a photographer:

James Dean first introduced Hopper to the Los Angeles art world after the two met on the set of Rebel Without a Cause. He went on to produce a wide body of visual art while working as an actor and director on classic movies like Easy Rider. As an artist, Hopper’s talent was most obvious in his photography, which documented his creatively charged milieu and reflected his uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time.

He was good:

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Mussulmen Against the Mosque

There are some Islamic clerics speaking against the construction of a mosque near the WTC site. Out of respect and a spirit of cooperation, healing and peace?

Nope.

Because it is part of a Jewish conspiracy:

Dr. Abd Al-Mu'ti Bayumi, a member of Al-Azhar's Islamic Research Academy, said that the mosque's construction could link Islam to 9/11, even though Islam is innocent of the deed. He also called the plan a "Zionist plot”.

Dialing back the crazy just a bit (maybe?), here’s another pronouncement from the same interview on the futility of interfaith dialog:

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Escher Economics

The great illusion of Progressivism is that the middle class can make the poor into the middle class.

Ascending and Descending drawing by M. C. Escher

Quoted from: Cobb’s Rules

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Government Shrinks, Commerce Increases

From the Antiplanner:

Late last year, Clayton County, Georgia (a suburban Atlanta county) decided to terminate its subsidized bus service to Atlanta, saying it was costing $10 million a year but only bringing in $2.5 million in revenue. Despite protests from bus riders, the service was duly ended on March 31, leaving many riders worried that they would not be able to reach their jobs.

Starting this week, a private party has started a new bus service following some of the same routes as the Clayton County buses. Fares will be $3.50, compared with average fare collections on the County buses of about $1.10 in 2008.

Look for more of this as local governments head toward insolvency over the next several years.

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Patton’s America

TJIC links to a retelling of General Patton’s famous speech:

Men, this stuff that some sources sling around about America wanting out of this war, not wanting to fight, is a crock of bullshit. Americans love to fight, traditionally. All real Americans love the sting and clash of battle. You are here today for three reasons. First, because you are here to defend your homes and your loved ones. Second, you are here for your own self respect, because you would not want to be anywhere else. Third, you are here because you are real men and all real men like to fight. When you, here, everyone of you, were kids, you all admired the champion marble player, the fastest runner, the toughest boxer, the big league ball players, and the All-American football players. Americans love a winner. Americans will not tolerate a loser. Americans despise cowards. Americans play to win all of the time. I wouldn't give a hoot in hell for a man who lost and laughed. That's why Americans have never lost nor will ever lose a war; for the very idea of losing is hateful to an American.

This is the culture I was born into.

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A Proposal Without Positives

In my time as neighborhood activist, I have supported and opposed many development ideas. The arguments—at least the public arguments—always revolved around the benefits, costs, and risks of a given proposal.

The near-WTC mosque supporters are not engaged in this sort of development and planning argument:

listen to the defenses being put up by the backers of the mosque. Boil it all down, and that is their argument in its entirety: "it's not illegal."

"We have the right to build our center here, or any place else."

"The Constitution guarantees our right to have our houses of worship."

"Those opposing us are bigots and prejudiced against Muslims."

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Coexisting Near Ground Zero

The proposed mosque community center at near ground zero the World Trade Center site has many people agitated. To me, they all seem dirty.

The site is two blocks from the WTC. How much of Manhattan must we declare to be sacred ground? Sure, it is “in the shadow”, but the buildings were a thousand feet tall. They cast long shadows. Get over it.

But why does the mosque have to be exactly there, anyway? Wouldn’t the alleged “religion of peace” guide the faithful to find a less-confrontational site?

The non-Muslim pro-mosquers seem to be the dirtiest of all. What exactly is their goal? To make the bible-thumping flag-wavers mad? To get more revenge on George W. Bush? They can’t seem to make a distinction between arguing against this particular tasteless proposal and wanting to outlaw Islam entirely.

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Same Picture, Different Frame

Perhaps the notable feature of the [1980s] decade was not that some people made money but that so many others were so bent out of shape by that. If some yuppie got a bonus, what was that to us? Rather than the Decade of Greed, wasn’t it really the Decade of Envy? Or the Decade of Envy, Jealousy, and other resentments there was no reason for those afflicted to sound so proud about?

Subjectively, far from being a Decade of Greed, the early 1980s were years of hard work and maximum productivity, better in my opinion than any period that has come since. For me and a lot of other people, the eighties were the young-adult Wonder Years, when autonomy came to the fore and we could finally do the things we were in uncomfortable preparation for all the years before that.

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Unequal Equalities

Republicans want black Americans to pursue happiness and the Democratic Party wants to provide happiness to black Americans.

Quoted from: Baldilocks

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Another Example of the Miracle that is Duct Tape

Via ComingAnarchy.com:

During a private “fly-in” fishing excursion in the [Alaskan] wilderness, a chartered pilot and fishermen left a cooler and bait in the plane. A bear smelled it and destroyed the plane.

Airplane torn apart by a bear

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There is a ladder, but you must choose to climb it

An observation by Steve Sailer, interesting even without its context:

Ironically, when I left the "Collapse" exhibit, with its warnings about overpopulation, at Los Angeles's Natural History museum, I turned out of the parking lot onto Martin Luther King Boulevard, where the billboards were in Spanish. In LA, the African Americans have been pushed off even MLK Blvd. by Latin American immigrants.

I read years back that South Central, the notorious crack-and-gang neighborhood in L.A., was rebranded as South Los Angeles. Not necessarily by some wishful-thinking community organizers, but as recognition that Latinos had moved in and improved the character of the place.

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Taking Credit for Not Doing a Worse Job

TJIC shows his best form ripping the current President and Big Media:

So why, exactly, is this being spun as an Obama victory?

Measured as a percentage of total economic output — the gauge that economists say is most meaningful — the deficit would be 10 percent of gross domestic product… well below the records set during World War II.

Fascinating!

The deficit was 25% when we assembled the largest armed forces in the history of human civilization, and conquered two continents at once.

…and with Obama’s socialist experiments, we’ve only run up a 10% deficit!

That is news – he’s doing a heck of ajob!

Just go read it.

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Fury on the Horizon

Vox Day writes:

A private sector job which exists solely to comply with government-dictated paperwork is every bit as government-manufactured and unproductive as a public sector job. And that is precisely the type of job which is going to disappear entirely once the debt edifice collapses and the extent of the dollar-denominated imaginary economy is revealed. Just as stripping out the debt-funded component of GDP reveals that there has been no actual economic growth for decades, stripping out the paperwork jobs will demonstrate that the real labor force is still roughly 2/3rd male, just as it was in 1950.

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Up and Down are Relative

Australia is “down under”. But that’s only an artifact of where the ancient mapmakers lived. This view is equally valid in the geographic and astronomical senses:

Politcal map of the world with Australia at the top

H/T: Theo Spark

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