Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Playing the victim

I expect that Hillary’s persistent usage of the tired old liberal tactic of attempting to silence legitimate criticism because of membership in some preferred group (in this case, women) could end up hurting her among voters willing to engage in some good old-fashioned critical thinking. even while it is largely ignored by a fawning national media. But even I was shocked to see this from radical abortion activist Kate Michelman: "At one minute, the strong woman ready to lead, the next, she's the woman under attack, disingenuously playing the victim card. It is not presidential."

Obviously the idea of woman as perpetual victim runs counter to the premise of feminism, much as “affirmative action” runs counter to the premise of civil rights; the idea in each case is that the individual is inherently too weak to survive and thrive if the game is not rigged in their favor. What’s rare is for sympathizers to the causes to suspend the prevailing cognitive dissonance and admit it. It's pretty clearly not the kind of behavior that one would want to see in any position of authority, much less the leader of the free world, but James Taranto reminds us that it's not exactly unusual and that it may pull Hillary back toward her competitors:

Male Democrats routinely do what Mrs. Clinton stands accused of doing now: pout and play the victim. There is no question that such behavior is unmanly. But it would be an outrageous sexist calumny to suggest that it is womanly. It is childish: Little boys and girls pout and play the victim. Grown men and women do not.

What about the politics of all this? Maybe it is true that women respond better than men to such childishness. Certainly they have tended to vote more Democratic than have men in recent presidential elections. Will a woman's playing the victim qua woman resonate even more with female voters than, say, Dukakis's or Kerry's crying over wounded patriotism? Perhaps. On the other hand, men vote too, and it also seems possible that they will find Mrs. Clinton's bellyaching especially off-putting.

There is another danger for Mrs. Clinton in all this. Her great advantage in the Democratic field is that she is the only one of the top candidates who comes across as a grown-up. Barack Obama seems like a bright young man who may do great things when he grows up. John Edwards is Peter Pan, Esq.

Being a woman sets Mrs. Clinton apart from the boys. Whining like a girl reduces her to their level.

Complicating the whole dynamic is that they are all members of victim groups, what with Obama being black and Edwards being an effeminate heterosexual. It gets hard to tell for whom to feel sorry, except for serious Democrat voters.

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Monday, November 19, 2007


Scattershooting while wondering whatever happened to Mike Smrek:

Just when you thought that (unlike in 2004) the Democrats might run somebody who takes only one side of a binary issue, Hillary debated herself into Mexigate. Ah, well, better to have a 50-50 chance of doing the right thing than 0, I suppose.

Name that college football dynasty: Their last significant win was over Michigan. Their several year home winning streak ended last month. With two losses, their chances of winning another conference championship are all but dead. Answer later.

Seen on the cover of the October 21 issue of Parade, the Sunday newspaper insert magazine: “Is Hugo Chavez Friend or Foe?”
Note to self: If you’re looking for anything deeper than the latest Paris/Lindsay/Britney news, avoid Parade. Next week’s cover story could be “Cancer: Good or Bad?”

The Colts have a kick returner named Craphonso Thorpe. Do you think he has a brother named Shithomas? Turdonald?

Department of Redundancy Department: State report says Texas has too many reports
"The Texas State Library and Archives Commission is declaring there are too many state reports.
It says so in a 668-page report.
The project took 18 months"
And that, my friends, is the perfect example of government in action.

I’m going to go out on a limb and guess I’ll never again win a bet on a team that gives up 74 points. But that was the case with my November 10 play on North Texas +16, which came in on a 74-62 loss to Navy. Navy outscored UNT 35-28 and outyarded them 400-220...IN THE SECOND QUARTER! Since each team had scored in the last minute of the first, they combined for 11 touchdowns in under 16 minutes. It was truly anti-soccer.

The Clinton machine has still got it – NY Governor Eliot Spitzer has scrapped his attempt to give driver’s licenses to illegal aliens. I wonder if it was the horse’s head that convinced him?

From a (ESPN NBA Insider) John Hollinger chat, this nicely sums up the quality of most online fan content:
Area Sports Fan (USA): Why can't you just accept the supremacy of my Area Sports Team? After all, their proximity to me and others like me make them a clear #1.

Name that college football dynasty answer: Appalachian State.

A milestone you won’t see in the New York Times: the 10,000th attack by Islamic terrorists and militants since 9/11 occurred last week. It turns out that some of the news isn't fit to print - when it deviates from the anti-American narrative.

That’s good, I’m not a fan of McNuggets: Cows Rounded Up After Escaping Truck in McDonald's Parking Lot. And you thought all the smart cows did Chick-fil-A ads.

I know Seattle is pretty far left, but this play from the 49ers-Seahawks game on November 12 is ridiculous:
1st and 10 at SEA 16 (13:50) (Shotgun) M.Hasselbeck Aborted.

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Monday, November 05, 2007

Greatness recognized

President Bush today will award the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the inspirational Cuban dissident and human rights activist Oscar Biscet. As you would expect, Biscet will not be there to accept the honor, as he is stuck in the Cuban gulag for 25 years after having had the temerity to speak out against Castro's policy of infanticide. Telling the truth in Cuba is dangerous business, as you can see from Jeff Jacoby's Biscet tribute in the Boston Globe (a photographed replica of his cell is also included in the article):

"windowless and suffocating, with wretched sanitary conditions. The stench seeping from the pit in the ground that serves as a toilet is intensified by being compressed into an unventilated cell only as wide as a broom closet. . . . Biscet reportedly suffers from osteoarthritis, ulcers, and hypertension. His teeth, those that haven't fallen out, are rotted and infected."

The next time somebody starts spewing the whole Guantanamo narrative, remind them that there are countless thousands across the bay who know all about torture. The real thing, not the kind that exists only in anti-American imagination. What a blessing these prisoners would find spending even a day in such a place as the US facility in Gitmo.

National Review's Jay Nordlinger has written extensively on Biscet (and many other Cuban political prisoners, for that matter) over the years; his latest notes the sad truth that these heroes, who should be worldwide celebrities a la Nelson Mandela, are pretty much ignored by the international media in the attempt to keep the Castro mythology alive:

He is one of the bravest and most inspired of the Cuban political prisoners. He is a physician, an “Afro-Cuban,” a follower of Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King. If he were a prisoner of anyone but Castro — a Communist dictator — he’d be world-famous. If he were a South African, under apartheid, he’d be on the stamps of virtually every country in the world.

Let me continue in this vein: If he were a prisoner under a right-wing dictatorship, he’d be featured on 60 Minutes every week. He’d be on the cover of Time magazine every week. College campuses would hold sit-ins. Biscet’s face would adorn posters and T-shirts. Etc., etc.

Nordlinger also correctly notes that President Bush has "huge brass ones" for doing the right thing here; were that more of our politicians had as much courage. Bush fils has gotten a lot of things wrong in his tenure, but he has also done so many things very, very right.

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

Now that's the spirit of Halloween!

Hilarious story from my fantasy football news source:

QB Jon Kitna (DET) and his wife dressed up as a naked man and a Wendy's drive-through attendant at a teammate's Halloween party, depicting an embarrassing moment for defensive line coach Joe Cullen. Now Kitna is getting some flak on local TV and in a newspaper column. Kitna said he was just trying to have fun, but regrets the scrutiny the costumes created. "If I would've known this, I wouldn't have done it because I didn't want to try to bring attention to it," Kitna said Wednesday. HC Rod
Marinelli said Kitna's costume was a non-issue with the team. "It's Halloween," Marinelli said. "I'll leave it at that." Cullen said "no comment" as he walked off the practice field Wednesday, but the team said it asked him if the costume bothered him. "No, not at all," Cullen said in a statement released by the team. "It's in the

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