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One Man No Longer Forgotten

Over the transom came a video about a painting titled The Forgotten Man. I can’t show the picture to you; you’ll have to go to the artist’s website.

The painting is interesting enough, and the artist has clearly done some study to decide who to depict. All the Presidents are there, along with many other people. The site has an interesting interactive component (which is why I can’t copy it). Go look and poke around. You will learn something.

I learned of a man called Fisher Ames. Ames was a member of the First Congress, representing a part of Massachusetts. He was also a noted orator and


Outmaneuvering the Mussulmen

The minister planning to burn Korans tomorrow may not be the crackpot we all thought he was. Or, at least he’s a wily crackpot.

After dominating the news and chatter for the week leading up to September 11th, Reverend Jones says he’ll call off the bonfire if the Muslims move their new mosque away from the WTC site:

Jones also said he is scheduled to travel to New York on Friday night for a still unscheduled meeting with the imam in charge of the Islamic center planned near ground zero. The meeting, Jones had said, was part of what convinced him to halt the planned burning.

Jones said the meeting was promised Thursday by local Florida imam Mohammad Musri, who also told him the Islamic center would be moved in exchange for the burning being called off.


The Tea Party Feeling

One of the Chicago Boyz, with a nom de blog of Lexington Green, figured out what Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor rally was all about:

Beck is building solidarity and cultural confidence in America, its Constitution, its military heritage, its freedom. This is a vision that is despised by the people who have long held the commanding heights of the culture. But is obviously alive and kicking.

Beck is creating positive themes of unity and patriotism and freedom and independence which are above mere political or policy choices, but not irrelevant to them. Political and policy choices rest on a foundation of philosophy, culture, self-image, ideals, religion. Change the foundation, and the rest will flow from that.

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Visionary from Wasilla

Candidates endorsed by Sarah Palin have won two-thirds of the time. A little more than half of those winners were non-establishment or Tea Party candidates.

Somewhere in disussions about the power of Sarahcuda, I caught this comment, worthy of a Snark Award:

I can see November from my house!

It is important to keep in mind that almost all the elections where Palin’s horse won were primaries. The dynamic is different when it is a Democrat against a Republican. People still tend to vote for the team instead of the candidate.

But I can’t help but grin when I think of all the leftoids who tried to dismiss Palin as a rube who’s 15 minutes expired two years ago.


Anything But Victory

Last night the current President took credit for executing a plan devised under the previous President to transfer control of Iraq to Iraqis. He did not mention that the 50,000 troops still in country have the same weapons and take the same risks as the day before, that “the end of combat operations” is an adjustment of administrative label instead of a marked shift in situation.

Barry also did not utter the word “win”. He did manage to say “victory” once, in a non-specific sense:

In an age without surrender ceremonies, we must earn victory through the success of our partners and the strength of our own nation.


Think Outside the Ballot Box

Remember, the problem isn't the Democrats, and the solution isn't the Republicans.

Quoted from: Borepatch

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An Open Question


Who Hates the Lebanese?

Something else you’re not being reminded in arguments about the Hamasque (and in the broader non-dialog concerning the people of Antijudea):

According to the Arab American Institute, the breakdown of religious affiliation among Arab Americans is as follows:


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.


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.


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:


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.



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:


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?


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:


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.


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.


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."


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.


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.


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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