Obama And 'Punitive Liberalism' Explained

This article by Roger Kimball is a must-read, must-link and must-forward piece.

Kimball outlines the horrible guilt liberals feel when anyone succeeds, and their weird zero-sum attitude that any such success must have come at someone else's expense. There is no math or science to it, it is simply emotional vapors. It leads to anti-rationality: for example, the idea that taxes should be raised simply to punish the rich and successful, even if it generates less revenue for government. It is an appeal to emotion and base envy, is anything but 'fair', and actually works at cross-purposes with the public good. Not surprisingly Obama believes in it wholeheartedly:

ABC’s Charlie Gibson . . . observed that raising taxes led to decreased revenues: “Well, Charlie,” Obama replied, “what I’ve said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness.”

That is liberal economics in a nutshell: put shackles on the wealthy simply so the rest of us don't feel so bad.

Musharraf Steps Down . . . What About The Nukes?

Sure, we're supposed to put our trust in democracy. One wonders, however, whether this is really a step towards democracy, or anarchy, or worse. Suffering from a death by a thousand cuts, threats of impeachment were the last straw for Musharraf:

"They want to impeach me now. Why do they want to do it?" a downcast Musharraf said in a televised address in which he denied any wrongdoing. "Do they want to cover their failure?"
As for Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, see if this makes you feel more safe, or less safe:
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Pervez Musharraf's departure from the presidency is unlikely to have a significant impact on how Pakistan's nuclear weapons are controlled. Experts say a 10-member committee, and not just the president, makes decisions on how to use them and only a complete meltdown in governance — still a distant prospect in Pakistan — could put the atomic bomb in the hands of extremists. "Pakistan's nuclear assets are not one man's property," said Maria Sultan, a defense analyst and director at the London-based South Asian Strategic Stability Institute. "Any (political) transition in Pakistan will have no effect on Pakistan's nuclear assets because it has a very strong custodial control." The committee, known as the National Command Authority, is served by a military-dominated organization with thousands of security forces and intelligence agents whose personnel are closely screened. The nuclear facilities are tightly guarded.
I have a bad feeling about this. We are going to miss Musharraf, sooner rather than later.

Devlin The Magician

Heh, I actually know this guy in real life. He is available for birthday parties, bar mitzvahs, and natural disasters.

Oh, there's more:

What can I say? I am as perplexed as you are. BTW, some of the comments on the YouTube pages are hilarious.

Thursday Night Babe

Behold Olympian Alicia Sacramone:

Yeah, she has been blamed a bit for some of the american gynmast team woes . . . but she probably has another career ahead of her in case this gymnast thing doesn't work out. She has been signed up to be a CoverGirl spokesmodel.

Or, she could go into boxing:

Are You Kidding Me? Julia Child Was An OSS Spy

I wonder if she snapped any necks with those man-hands of hers.

We might learn more today:

The full secret comes out Thursday, all of the names and previously classified files identifying nearly 24,000 spies who formed the first centralized intelligence effort by the United States. The National Archives, which this week released a list of the names found in the records, will make available for the first time all 750,000 pages identifying the vast spy network of military and civilian operatives.

Some of the other operatives named were already well-known to have worked for U.S. intelligence, such as Kermit Roosevelt, Moe Berg and Miles Copeland.

The list also includes Sterling Hayden. Heh, how could a guy like that not have worked for the OSS? No big surprise there.

But Julia Child . . . ? My esteem for her has gone up immensely. If this doesn't turn out to be some kind of prank, that is.

P.S. For me, this was like learning that Ray Rayner helped plan The Great Escape. Will wonders never cease?

Obama Is Partisan, Not Bipartisan

To Democrats, being 'bipartisan' means Republicans caving in to their demands.

So in a sense, Barack Obama can be forgiven for claiming he will 'bring people together' in some sort of post-partisan paradise - after all, he does not really understand what 'bipartisan' is supposed to mean in an objective, non-Dem fashion. Nor does bipartisan mean merely joining in sponsoring or voting for legislation along with Republicans. All senators do this. No bill can pass without help from both parties.

There is scant evidence that Obama really understands what significant bipartisan-ism is, as Joe Lieberman (who knows a thing or two about this) explains:

"If there's one public official who has consistently put his country ahead of his party, working across party lines to get things done in Washington, it is John McCain," Lieberman said in an interview with ABC News. "It's not Barack Obama, with all respect."

Lieberman scoffed at the formation today of Republicans for Obama by former Iowa Rep. Jim Leach and former Rhode Island Sen. Lincoln Chafee, saying it was McCain who had spent a career working with people on both sides -- often at some cost within his own party.

"Sen. Obama has no record that I can see of taking on positions that are held by a lot of people within his own party," Lieberman said. "John McCain does that all the time. It's part of the reason it took some while for a lot of Republicans to come to his side. Sen. McCain has worked across party lines on the big issues of our time because he knows, he has no patience for partisan politics and all those games."

Now we can argue whether McCain's bipartisanship is a good thing, or a bad thing. Personally, McCain seems to be all too eager to woo the press and win political plaudits by caving to and even sponsoring Democrats' pet issues. It makes one wonder what his core values even are.

But to those in the mushy middle who think bipartisanship is the be all and end all of political aspirations, McCain can claim something Obama cannot: he actually is bipartisan.

For better or worse, that is what the record shows.

Well Whaddya Know: The Edwards Affair Now Has Its Own Wikipedia Entry

When the dam bursts, it really goes.

You may recall that Wikipedia invoked its 'protect Democrats at all costs' policy by refusing to post rumors about the Edwards affair that would have appeared instantly had it been Rush Limbaugh or Karl Rove in trouble instead. The Enquirer is solidly reliable only when it reports on Republicans, it seems.

It is a rather lengthy article on the whole sordid affair, and Mickey Kaus gets his due for doing the job the MSM refused to handle.

Kaus is oddly MIA from Blogginheads.tv however. I hope he and Bob Wright haven't had some kind of falling out over this.

My guess is that Kaus is taking his victory lap in Beijing, so it might be a while before he diavlogs again.

Leftist Logic: Republicans And The JOOS Started The War In Georgia

The dumbest conspiracy theory since 911 trutherism comes from - where else? - the brain trust known as the Huffington Post. This is what passes for proof of this bizarre idea:

What is most interesting is that McCain's chief foreign policy aide, Randy Scheunemann, has been advising/ lobbying for pro-western Georgia for the last four years.

Stratfor links to some weird chest-puffing by Sergei Balmasov writing for Pravda, which seems to indicate that this entire Russian exercise is indeed nothing but an attempt to intimidate any would-be NATO members from the former Soviet Union:

First off, Russia has proved to have the army capable of conducting successful operations, in which many Western observers doubted before. Secondly, the Russians have showed that they can defeat the forces trained by US advisors. Finally, Russia has shown that the USA and NATO do not find themselves in the situation when they can interfere into a conflict from the military point of view.

Balmasov then goes on to blame the Republicans:

The Republicans organized the provocation to portray Russia as a monster on the globe on the threshold of the November elections.

Pravda, in another editorial, managed to blame Israel and compare the Georgians to Hitler all in the same jaw-dropping paragraph:

Georgian troops attempted to storm the city much as Hitler‘s Panzer divisions blazed through Europe. Also noteworthy is the fact that Georgian tanks and infantry were being aided by Israeli advisors, a true indicator that this conflict was instigated by outside forces.

I hope this 'theory' gets wide play. It shows that leftists are true to their roots in using Soviet logic to explain world events.

Hat tip to Gateway Pundit, who gets in this great jab at Obama - "Any outbreak in global insecurity plays into the hands of John McCain."

Putin's March To The Sea

Hey how about them Olympics! Oh yeah, and apparently there is some war going on in some place called Georgia that isn't in the southern U.S.

(via Stratfor via Tigerhawk)

Just Desserts: Cohen Beats Tinker

There is a little justice in the world:

Rep. Steve Cohen, who won just 31% of the primary vote in a crowded field in 2006, beat former Congressional aide and attorney Nikki Tinker by a 79%-19% margin to retain the Democratic nomination in Tennessee's Ninth District. In the Memphis-based seat where about 60% of the population is African American, a white Jewish Democrat winning a second term by such a vast margin came as a surprise to many.

Tinker, who is African American, went on the attack late in the campaign, using language and images in advertisements that invoked the Ku Klux Klan and toed other racial lines. But Cohen, a former State Senator and local official for three decades, confidently predicted victory all along, and turned some of the attacks back against Tinker.

That is a whopping defeat for Tinker and her black racist views. It is hard to think that the reaction against black racist Jeremiah Wright didn't have just a little to do with this as well. Blacks do not want to be associated with paranoid racist ravings any more than Whites do (even more so you would think, given their history of being victimized by racism), so they rightfully rejected it.

Congratulations and kudos to Steve Cohen, and the good people of Tennessee's Ninth District (you know who you are).

P.S. Naturally, the New York Times somehow forgot to mention any party affiliations in this very ugly Democratic race (ahem).

John Edwards Admits Extra-Marital Affair

The gatekeepers can no longer protect their favorite politicians. The coverup of the Edwards affair was doomed to fail in this age of new media, and the accumulating undernews proved to be too much for Edwards to deny:

John Edwards repeatedly lied during his Presidential campaign about an extra-marital affair with a novice film-maker, the former Senator admitted to ABC News today.

In an interview for broadcast tonight on Nightline, Edwards told ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff he did have an affair with 42-year old Rielle Hunter, but said that he did not love her.

I am a bit surprised that ABC News said Edwards repeatedly lied, and didn't use some cutesy euphemism such as he 'misspoke' or 'wasn't completely truthful' about his affair.

Obama: “America is no longer, uh … what it could be, uh . . what it once was."

Not exactly 'morning in America', is it:

I suppose only the Messiah can save us now.

Update: Jim Geraghty quips: "One spouse says we used to be great and have fallen; one spouse says we haven't been great until now."

Hey, Barack and Michelle . . . which is it?

Truck Crawls Up Gateway Pundit's Rear End, Jim Hoft Lives To Blog About It

I am really really glad Gateway Pundit survived a fairly serious wreck earlier today.

The guy is indispensable, and a source for what seems to be half of my blog posts.

He was a really good sport back when I was blogging at WILLisms.com, so I am glad he came out of it with little more than some soreness.

Too bad he can't say the same about his golf clubs.

Barack Obama, Coward

Today in Berea, Ohio, hiding behind his telepromtper, and courageously facing a large throng of adoring Obamanoids, Barack Obama said this:

"So I’m happy to have a battle of words because I’ve got facts on my side," he concluded. "I’ve got truth on my side! I fear no man when I’ve got truth on my side!"

Then why is Obama so afraid to talk to Sean Hannity? After all, Obama has 'truth on his side' and Hannity is nothing but a rightwing hack, so why is Obama avoiding him? Of course it doesn't have to be Hannity, pick any rightwinger you like. Obama is afraid of all of them. I guess that makes Obama not only gutless, but dishonest as well: he does indeed fear many people even though he thinks he has truth on his side.

McCain, in contrast to Obama, fearlessly engages the press, and has subjected himself to fierce partisan grillings on ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS and any other venue that will allow him to speak. McCain handles the press very well, but that has come about by repeated practice. He now reaps the benefits: sure the press is in the tank for Obama, but they cannot bring themselves to excoriate McCain the way they would any other Republican.

Obama's reticence to subject himself to anything resembling a pointed question explains why he is avoiding townhall meetings with John McCain. Obama is deathly afraid of stepping into the ring where McCain feels very comfortable. Without his teleprompter, handlers and scripts, Obama is just "ah . . . uh . . . um . . .", a lot of fluff, and a lot of gaffes.

McCain, to his great credit, is not debilitated by any such fear of the opposition.

Pickler Rides To The Rescue On 'Inflation'

Inflation: are we talking about the economy, tires, or Obama's ego?

This is the kind of thing that makes conseratives wonder if maybe, just maybe, the press is running a kind of protection racket for Barack Obama. The objective journalist Nedra Pickler, whose 'fact check' segments always somehow help Democrats but never Republicans, decided to 'fact check' this statement by John McCain:

"The only thing I've heard him say is that we should inflate our tires," McCain said. "So he has no plan for addressing the energy challenges that we face."

Notice that Pickler is not reporting on Obama's major gaffe when he said that proper tire inflation would cure our need for offshore drilling. Pickler charitably says Obama "may have been exaggerating" when making that claim (yet does not see fit to 'fact check' it). Nor is Pickler reporting on Obama's staggering flip flop on offshore drilling. Obama now supports some kind of limited OCS drilling. Obama pulled yet another huge flip flop by saying he now wants to pull oil out of the strategic reserve - but Pickler did not see fit to report on that.

Instead, she decided to 'fact check' McCain on his impression of what Obama's energy plans are. McCain did not literally mean that Obama has no energy plan - every presidential candidate has position papers and statements on every issue imaginable, and yes Obama does have a bubbly, pointless energy plan that does nothing whatsoever to relieve the high energy costs we face right now:

Besides the recommendation to keep tires properly inflated, Obama also suggested providing incentives for people to trade in gas guzzling vehicles for more fuel-efficient cars; investing in research and development to produce new fuel-saving technologies like long-running batteries; encouraging innovation in alternative energies; and retrofitting buildings to make them more energy efficient.

Pickler may work for the AP, but she is a flak for the Obama campaign, and she is obviously worried that her candidate Obama is being drubbed on this tire pressure gaffe. She is just dying to get that list out there to show how brave and visionary Obama actually is on energy.

Note, however, how none of Obama's ideas will produce a single drop of petroleum. McCain was absolutely correct when he said that Obama "has no plan for addressing the energy challenges that we face."