WC Varones

Don't lend your hand to raise no flag atop no ship of fools

Not Miers

Speculation is in full swing on the next Supreme Court nominee. Many are mentioning White House Counsel Harriet Miers.

Look at her resume. Do you really think President Bush would defend a resume this thin, immediately after being burned by nominating a failed horse enthusiast and former college intern to run FEMA?

Resume courtesy of Kaus.

UPDATE: Oh, man, was I wrong! Lesson: never underestimate the stupidity and cronyism of this administration.

Stupid Canadian tricks

Idiotic Canadian writer David Martin suggests in the Chicago Tribune that Americans should elect a Hillary Clinton - Bill Clinton ticket in 2008. David, like most foreigners, is infatuated with Bill Clinton and would love to give him a Lewinsky Special. But David also pretends to know something about the U.S. Constitution:


The 22nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution does restrict a sitting president to two terms in office. But it doesn't say anything about preventing such a person from running for vice president.

The 12th Amendment states that anyone who is eligible for the presidency under Article II is eligible for the vice presidency. As a natural-born American older than 35, Bill Clinton qualifies, and there's nothing in the 22nd Amendment to disqualify him based on his years as president.

How about the last sentence of the 12th Amendment?

But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States.

Bill Clinton is constitutionally ineligible to the office of President. Therefore he's ineligible for Vice-President, you nitwit.

Let's make a deal. You stop bothering us with your Bill Clinton fantasies, and we won't tell you to elect Terrence and Philip prime minister.

I can't wait to see this movie

"Inside the Bubble," a behind-the-scenes look at the Kerry-Edwards train wreck.

SuperDome rape and murder: 99% BS

Don't believe the hype:

Following days of internationally reported murders, rapes and gang violence inside the stadium, the doctor from FEMA — Beron doesn't remember his name — came prepared for a grisly scene: He brought a refrigerated 18-wheeler and three doctors to process bodies.

"I've got a report of 200 bodies in the Dome," Beron recalled the doctor saying.

The real total? Six, Beron said. Of those, four died of natural causes, one overdosed and another jumped to his death in an apparent suicide, said Beron, who personally oversaw the handoff of bodies from a Dome freezer, where they lay atop melting bags of ice.

...

The vast majority of reported atrocities committed by evacuees — mass murders, rapes and beatings — have turned out to be false, or at least unsupported by any evidence, according to key military, law-enforcement, medical and civilian officials in positions to know.

"I think 99 percent of it is [expletive]," said Sgt. 1st Class Jason Lachney, who played a key role in security and humanitarian work inside the Dome. "Don't get me wrong — bad things happened. But I didn't see any killing and raping and cutting of throats or anything ... 99 percent of the people in the Dome were very well-behaved."



From Powerline and Michelle Malkin.

Guardian report: Europe receiving beauty products made from executed Chinese prisoners.

The Guardian can be a little goofy sometimes, but I don't think they just make stuff up.

Creepy:

A Chinese cosmetics company is using skin harvested from the corpses of executed convicts to develop beauty products for sale in Europe, an investigation by the Guardian has discovered.

Agents for the firm have told would-be customers it is developing collagen for lip and wrinkle treatments from skin taken from prisoners after they have been shot. The agents say some of the company's products have been exported to the UK, and that the use of skin from condemned convicts is "traditional" and nothing to "make such a big fuss about".

No quarter

One fewer workers' paradise for those seeking refuge from George W. Bush's cruel capitalist America:

Exit polls showed Polish voters ousted the nation's scandal-prone government of ex-communists in parliamentary elections Sunday, giving a broad majority to two center-right parties that have promised tax cuts and clean government.

Projections based on exit polls by state television showed the socially conservative Law and Justice Party with 27.8 percent and the free-market Civic Platform with 24.1 percent. The governing Democratic Left Alliance, which has been plagued by Europe's highest unemployment rate and scandals, lagged behind with 11.2 percent.

Socialism and high unemployment? Who would have thought?

Well, they still have Cuba and Venezuela.

Farewell, Gretchen Morgenson

I used to read Gretchen Morgenson's NY Times Business column. Not that she ever wrote anything really brilliant, but she covered corporate crime stories that I find interesting.

Now the Times has made her columns, along with those of many other columnists, available only to paying subscribers to a new service, "TimesSelect." I won't miss them much.

What will the primary effect of this new policy be: increased revenues or decreased readership? My money is on the latter. The Times is arrogant to believe that with all the great free content available on the web, its mediocre columnists deserve a premium.

The anti-Bush alternative

So if I'm tired of Bush, what's the alternative?

These people have some ideas.

Four more years! Four more years!

From Powerline.

BBC: Will Katrina bring workers' revolution?

Self-parody at its finest: the BBC asks whether Hurricane Katrina will bring an end to America's evil capitalist system:


The real question - putting it baldly - is whether there is going to be a revolution.

Will the American social and economic system - which creates the wealth that pays for billionaires' private jets, and the poverty which does not allow for a bus fare out of New Orleans - be addressed?


I don't remember -- did France's heat wave bring an end to that country's corrupt and incompetent socialist system?

I've posted many times before on Europeans' distorted view of America. With idiots like this assigned to report on America, it's no wonder.

From Ann Althouse via NRO.

NY Times ombudsman to reader: drop dead!

Yesterday I posted about the New York Times' failure to report criminal dirty tricks committed by Senator Schumer's staffers.

One reader wrote to the Times' ombudsman asking why there had been no coverage. The ombudsman's ridiculous non-response:



Dear Reader,

Thanks for writing and raising this issue. This office has no control over what is printed in the paper. It seems your message would be better directed to news-tips@nytimes.com.

Sincerely,

Simone Bridges
Office of the Public Editor
The New York Times

Note: The public editor's opinions are his own and do not represent those of The New York Times.


The Times' news department has suppressed a major story for partisan political reasons, and the best the ombudsman can say is, "Why don't you send that to news tips?"

I sent a similar query to the ombudsman yesterday, and have yet to receive a response. The ombudsman's e-mail address is public@nytimes.com. Not that you'll get a response.

What's the point of an ombudsman if his response to serious reader concerns is just "Sorry, not my department!"?

That's Texas

Houston's response to looters.

From Instapundit.

Bin Laden: impotent jackass

Drudge reports that 60 Minutes will finally report what W.C. Varones told you nine months ago: Osama Bin Laden is an impotent jackass hiding in a cave:

The Pakistani military officers battling al Qaeda along the border with Afghanistan who have the latest first-hand information about Osama bin Laden believe he is hiding with a small cadre in Afghanistan and is no longer an effective leader for the terrorist group. Steve Kroft's report from Pakistan will be broadcast on the 38th season premiere of 60 MINUTES Sunday, Sept. 25 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS television Network. "I think now [bin Laden] is being protected or assisted by a very short number, which keeps his profile very low, the counter-terrorism head of Pakistan's Intelligence Service, ISI, tells Kroft.

Lefties Gone Wild!

Congressman Charlie Rangel, comparing President Bush to the man who used fire hoses and attack dogs on civil rights marchers:


Comparing President Bush to the Birmingham, Ala., police commissioner whose resistance to the civil rights movement became synonymous with Southern racism, Rep. Charles Rangel said yesterday of the president: “George Bush is our Bull Connor.”

Mr. Rangel’s metaphoric linkage of Mr. Bush to the late Theophilus “Bull” Connor — who in 1963 turned fire hoses and attack dogs on blacks, including Martin Luther King Jr., demonstrating in favor of equal rights — met with wild applause and cheering at a Congressional Black Caucus town hall meeting, part of the organization’s 35th Annual Legislative Conference.

With mental patients like Rangel representing the Democratic Party, is it any wonder Republicans are still winning the White House and both houses of Congress?

Howard Dean's spam machine

I just got an e-mail from Howard Dean asking me to use a tool on the DNC's web site to send mass e-mails to local and national newspapers telling them what I think of John Roberts.

I took him up on the offer, and used his site to e-mail all of my local papers, plus some of the big national papers:

Editor:

Howard Dean is e-mailing thousands of people and asking them to use this automatic letter generator to spam newspapers with angry leftist rants in vain against John Roberts.

John Roberts may be more conservative than some people would like, but when I think of the difference between John Roberts and Howard Dean, I like Roberts more and more. He is a kind, honest, and brilliant man, in stark contrast to Howard Dean, a raving lunatic.

I would, however, like to thank Dr. Dean for the use of his spam machine to generate this message.

Regards,

W.C. Varones

The site is here. Try it! It's fun!

Condemnation for public safety... or eminent domain?

So the Islip fire marshal condemns an apartment building, throwing 100 poor people out into the street. Then it turns out that maybe the building might not really have been unsafe. Then it turns out that a developer has been eyeing the property to build luxury townhouses. As the Church Lady would say, "How convenient!"

Then again, hasn't Islip heard? We have a bunch of leftist jackasses on the Supreme Court (Stevens, Kennedy, Baader-Meinhof, Breyer and Souter) who ruled that cities don't need to go through bogus condemnations to take people's property and give it to developers. They can just say the magic words, "eminent domain!"

Gaullist pride

France has something to be proud of.

Media bias yet again

Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY)'s staffers illegally accessed the credit files of Republican Lt. Governor of Maryland Michael Steele in an apparent political dirty tricks operation designed to sabotage Senate bid by Steele.

Where does the New York Times bury the story? On page A28? B14? Nope, the New York Times doesn't think felonious dirty tricks committed by staffers of its senior Senator deserve coverage at all.

Does anyone really think the Times would have failed to report the story if Al D'Amato's staffers had done this a few years back?

If you want to know what's happening in New York, don't rely on the New York Times.

From Michelle Malkin.

Ignorant Americans

The nation's greatest newspaper can't get Iain Duncan Smith's name right... and they refer to Senator Man-on-Dog by his less-known name, "Rick Santorum."

Howard Dean: I'm a savior, and John Kerry is a big pussy

Howard Dean could use some handlers:

DNC Chairman Howard Dean is now boasting that he's the savior of the Democratic Party, in a none-too-subtle slap at former party chief Terry McAuliffe, not to mention the last Democratic standard bearer, Sen. John Kerry.

Asked why he wanted to run the DNC, Dean told ABC's "The View" last week: "Somebody had to save the party."

He insisted that Democrats were heading in the wrong direction before he took over, telling "View" gabber Joy Behar, "We thought we were going to win by becoming Republicans."

The ex-Vermont governor suggested that Sen. Kerry didn't have the backbone to defeat President Bush in last year's election, saying, "If you want to win, it's not so much what you believe ... it's whether you're willing to fight for what you believe. And the Democrats had given up. We had simply not been willing to stand up and fight."

Brother, can you spare a dime?

Air America Radio, which was supposed to be a commercial radio network, is apparently finding it hard to sell commercials. And that scam where they stole from children's charities will be hard to pull off again. So now they are begging listeners to send donations to keep them alive.

Why not just follow the path of that other left-wing network, NPR, and demand that the taxpayers fund their listener-free radio?

HT: Anklebitingpundits.

Why Insurgents Won't Quit

Good article today in column one of the Wall Street Journal, dealing with how the U.S. is about the only country out there not paying huge ransoms to kidnappers.

Also includes the typo of the day: "MSF efforts to keep Mr. Erkel in the pubic eye created new possibilities--and complexities." No doubt...

This is kinda what I was thinking

What the hell is eBay doing buying Skype?

eBay is paying a lot of money for an internet phone service that is pretty easily replicable by Google, Yahoo, and others. It's got a big user base, but there won't be much stickiness to the user base if someone else comes up with a better service.

eBay's answer to the obvious question of synergies is laughable: "People trading on eBay might want to talk to each other." Yes, and people trading on eBay might be hungry. So why doesn't eBay buy Domino's?

It's a common sight to see companies with highly valued stock and high growth expectations make big acquisitions. But it's not a good sign. It's a sign that eBay is grasping at straws to stave off slowing growth.

Stupid e-mail joke that made me laugh in my new anti-Bush mood

So anyway, Rummy's giving W the daily briefing on Iraq, Afghanistan and so on. And he winds up saying, "And three Brazilian soldiers were killed."

And W gasps and turns white and puts his head down on the table, groaning with grief. All the aides are deeply concerned at this display of strong emotion, since he had certainly weathered harsher storms with nary a flicker.Then he raised his face, streaming with tears. "God, that's so horrible, I can hardly get my mind around it. Three Brazilians! ... How many's a brazillion?"

Did anyone ask for his opinion?

The irrelevant Senator Kerry in an e-mail to supporters (and Varones) on the Roberts nomination:

Monday, I shared with you my Brown University speech setting out what needs to be said and done at this critical moment for our country. Today, in that same spirit of clarity and conviction, I want to tell you how I will vote on the nomination of John Roberts to serve as Chief Justice of the United States.

I will vote against this vitally important nomination.

Win or lose on this vote, it is essential that we act on our deepest convictions. And I refuse to vote for a Supreme Court nominee who came before the Senate intent on demonstrating his ability to deftly deflect legitimate questions about his views, opinions and philosophy.

John Roberts owed the American people far more than that.

If he is confirmed - and he may well be - the Roberts Court will shape the course of constitutional law for decades to come. It will decide dozens of cases that will define the depth and breadth of freedom in America - our commitment to civil rights, our dedication to civil liberties, our devotion to privacy and a woman's right to choose.

With that much at stake, Judge Roberts needed to show us where his heart is.

Instead he recited case law and said little about what he really thought. He needed to engage the Senate Judiciary Committee and the American people in a genuine conversation. He failed that test. And, while I recognize that other members of the Senate will legitimately make a different choice, I will vote "NO" on the Roberts nomination.

And in other shocking news that will alter the political landscape, Senator Ted Kennedy ate a dozen donuts and chased them with a fifth of Scotch.

UPDATE: James Taranto asks:
Wouldn't it be nice if the Senate held a cloture vote on the nomination first? That way, the haughty, French-looking Massachusetts Democrat, who by the way served in Vietnam could vote for Roberts before voting against him!

Your tax dollars at work

The FBI will divert resources from little things like international terrorism to help fight the growing pornography crisis:


The FBI is joining the Bush administration's War on Porn. And it's looking for a few good agents.

Early last month, the bureau's Washington Field Office began recruiting for a new anti-obscenity squad. Attached to the job posting was a July 29 Electronic Communication from FBI headquarters to all 56 field offices, describing the initiative as "one of the top priorities" of Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and, by extension, of "the Director." That would be FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III.

Mischievous commentary began propagating around the water coolers at 601 Fourth St. NW and its satellites, where the FBI's second-largest field office concentrates on national security, high-technology crimes and public corruption.

The new squad will divert eight agents, a supervisor and assorted support staff to gather evidence against "manufacturers and purveyors" of pornography -- not the kind exploiting children, but the kind that depicts, and is marketed to, consenting
adults.

"I guess this means we've won the war on terror," said one exasperated FBI agent, speaking on the condition of anonymity because poking fun at headquarters is not regarded as career-enhancing. "We must not need any more resources for espionage."


OK, I guess I haven't said it enough before, so I'll say it loudly now and try to repeat it often: The Bush Administration is a bunch of incompetent religious zealot jackasses.

From Drudge.

Lies and the lying liars who tell them

More from Michelle Malkin on Air Ameriscam.

Ace on eminent domain and the dismay of the left

Ace is right on today on eminent domain and the reaction of leftists who are horrified that their activist judges support developers over individual homeowners:

Lefties, please think twice about trying to keep constructionists out of the Supreme Court. I know you value the document, in your own way. Please keep this in mind. Constructionists, GOOD.

More evidence uncovered

Louis Farrakhan on the conspiracy to drown black people:

"I heard from a very reliable source who saw a 25 foot deep crater under the levee breach. It may have been blown up to destroy the black part of town and keep the white part dry," Farrakhan said.

I'm sorry to say I'm being rude

Celine Dion may top Kanye West for the funniest hurricane rant. Here's the video.

I'm waking up in the morning, I'm having a coffee, I barely can swallow it. I come here, at Caesar's Palace every night, to perform. I barely can sing. But for respect, for the people who come, I am still singing.

When I come home at night, my son is waiting for me. I watch television. Yes, we gave a million dollar. But what we expect, what I want to look, like the rest of the world, I open the television. There's people still there, waiting to be rescued, and for me it's not acceptable. I know there's reasons for it. I'm sorry to say I'm being rude, but I don't wanna hear those reasons.

You know, some people are stealing and they're making a big deal out of it. "Oh, they're stealing twenty pair of jeans," or "they're stealing television sets." Who cares? They're not gonna go too far with it. Maybe those people are so poor, some of the people who do that, they're so poor they've never touched anything in their lives. Let them touch those things for once!

The main thing right now, it's not the people who are stealing, it's the people who are left there, and they're watching "helicopsters" flying over their heads, and they're praying. How come it's so easy to send planes in another country to kill everyone in a second, to destroy lives?


It goes on, with Celine crying and gesticulating frantically throughout. Watch the whole thing.

Take a kayak!

Pot, meet kettle

Paying people unsustainable wages to work in inhumane conditions... to protest Wal-Mart!

They're not union members; they're temp workers employed through Allied Forces/Labor Express by the union—United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW). They're making $6 an hour, with no benefits; it's 104 F, and they're protesting the working conditions inside the new Wal-Mart grocery store.

"It don't make no sense, does it?" says James Greer, the line foreman and the only one who pulls down $8 an hour, as he ambles down the sidewalk, picket sign on shoulder, sweaty hat over sweaty gray hair, spitting sunflower seeds. "We're sacrificing for the people who work in there, and they don't even know it."


Hmmmmm... ever wonder if the Wal-Mart employees might not want their help?

From OpinionJournal and Alarming News.

Things to look forward to

I hope everyone is getting ready for National Talk Like a Pirate Day.

Media bias, yet again

Michelle Malkin exposes more blatant partisanship by some of the biggest broadcast and print news organizations.

CNN and other partisan news services are delighting in exposing how firms with Republican ties are profiting from providing services in New Orleans:

Companies with ties to the Bush White House and the former head of FEMA are clinching some of the administration's first disaster relief and reconstruction contracts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

At least two major corporate clients of lobbyist Joe Allbaugh, President Bush's former campaign manager and a former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, have already been tapped to start recovery work along the battered Gulf Coast.

One is Shaw Group Inc. and the other is Halliburton Co. subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root. Vice President Dick Cheney is a former head of Halliburton.



Wow... those corrupt Republicans at it again, huh? The only problem is that CNN neglected to mention that Shaw Group Chairman and CEO Jim Bernhard is the Chairman of the Louisiana Democratic Party, and that he is a huge friend and supporter of Governor Kathleen Blanco.

Other mainstream media conveniently omitting these facts while connecting contractors to Allbaugh: the New York Times, UPI, and MSNBC/Reuters.

Limousine Liberals Leave Darkie at the Doorstep

After first planning to accept a number of hurricane refugees into their community, the white folk of Basalt, Colorado have apparently had second thoughts. The wealthy mountain community near Aspen held a meeting intended to focus on "resettlement of Hurricane Katrina victims," but that apparently meant "resettling them elsewhere."
"Aren't we really going to do these people a grave injustice by introducing them to our climate and our cost of living?" [Mayor Leroy] Duroux asked. "It may be worse for them than being in a shelter."

Not to mention the irritation of Basalt kids having to share classrooms with black children, or its women having to quicken their step in the parking lot after buying groceries.

"Take my tax money, please! Just don't make me touch these people."

The Kanye West remix

A great remix of Kanye West:

George Bush Don't Like Black People

Question of the day

What kind of President hires an inept hack like Michael Brown?
- John Kobylt, KFI Radio

FEMA head Michael Brown to resign

He's been lying on his resume.

When will he resign? The over/under is in hours, not days.

Kanye West, comedic genius

I had only read the comments and NBC's response when I commented on them. I hadn't actually seen the video.

Now a non-partisan friend of mine from Australia sends me the video in one of those group "Check this out. It's hilarious" e-mails.

Here it is.

He's right. That is comedy gold. I laughed out loud. Maybe Kanye was doing a spontaneous audition for Saturday Night Live. He was even funnier than Chris Rock as Nat X.

Isn't 34 Years Warning Enough?

While Nixon was pressing his fascist agenda in the early 1970s, he no doubt missed the signs of real problems that were all too clear to free-minded Americans. Jimmy Page and Robert Plant in 1971:

If it keeps on rainin', levee's goin' to break,
If it keeps on rainin', levee's goin' to break,
When The Levee Breaks I'll have no place to stay.
How does a Republican respond to this kind of prescient advice? By passing the Controlled Substances Act, so they couldn't get weed anymore.

NY Times, April 2005: Don't fund the levees!

NY Times, September 2005: It's all the Republicans' fault!

From NRO's Media Blog:
The [September 1 NYT] editorial built up to this penultimate paragraph:
While our attention must now be on the Gulf Coast's most immediate needs, the nation will soon ask why New Orleans's levees remained so inadequate. Publications from the local newspaper to National Geographic have fulminated about the bad state of flood protection in this beloved city, which is below sea level. Why were developers permitted to destroy wetlands and barrier islands that could have held back the hurricane's surge? Why was Congress, before it wandered off to vacation, engaged in slashing the budget for correcting some of the gaping holes in the area's flood protection?

Good question. Maybe because Congress listened to the NY Times editorial board in April of 2005:
Anyone who cares about responsible budgeting and the health of America's rivers and wetlands should pay attention to a bill now before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. The bill would shovel $17 billion at the Army Corps of Engineers for flood control and other water-related projects — this at a time when President Bush is asking for major cuts in Medicaid and other important domestic programs. Among these projects is a $2.7 billion boondoggle on the Mississippi River that has twice flunked inspection by the National Academy of Sciences...

This is a bad piece of legislation.

Thanks, Lorie.

Al Franken, lying liar

Michelle Malkin exposes Al Franken as a lying liar in Air America's theft from children's charities scandal.

From Lorie Byrd.

Malkin suggests calling Air Ameriscam:

Air America's call-in number is 1-866-303-2270. Listen live here. Tell them what you read here, and let us know if they respond.

Pay to walk

The greedy bureaucrats at the Golden Gate Bridge District, not content with constantly raising bridge tolls for cars, now want to charge people to walk or bike on the bridge.

The state legislature is passing a law that would prohibit tolls for bicyclists and pedestrians. Here is why you should support it. Here is a link to send a free fax to Governor Schwarzenegger urging him to support it.

That's a switch

Republican governor says social policy should be written by activist judges, not by elected representatives.

Steyn on New Orleans

Mark Steyn on the stain on New Orleans:

My mistake was to think that the citizenry of the Big Easy would rise to the great rallying cry of Todd Beamer: "Are you ready, guys? Let's roll!" Instead, the spirit of the week was summed up by a gentleman called Mike Franklin, taking time out of his hectic schedule of looting to speak to the Associated Press: "People who are oppressed all their lives, man, it's an opportunity to get back at society."

Take quote, apply liberally

A wise professor I know told me that his late father frequently said this: "Liberals love humanity, but hate people."

The Balkanization of America must continue, even in times of crisis

I was listening to Communist Radio on Friday. Lakshmi Singh was interviewing Betty Hearn Morrow, a "disaster sociologist," about the hurricane recovery process.

Morrow said that shelters should be segregated because people feel more comfortable around others from their own ethnic and cultural backgrounds:

One of the things that will help, I think, is if as much as possible, they can be located with people they know, or at least people from their own ethnic or cultural group, even within the shelters. It gives comfort to be around people like yourself. So I’m hoping that there will be some thought of that as people are placed even within the shelters, that they have something that seems familiar to them to the extent possible.

I can imagine: "Well, losing my house and not knowing whether my family is safe is pretty tough. But having to sit next to a black person in the shelter!!! It was just too traumatic!"

Yes, there are racists in 21st century America. And they are overwhelmingly on the left.

Uncle Tom, Meet Aunt Condi...

Condi: "That Americans would somehow in a color-affected way decide who to help and who not to help, I just don't believe it."

Well, certainly not in this country...and least of all in the deep South. Who would even suggest...

Blame Bush crowd wrong on the facts

Powerline on the media's appalling coverage of Hurricane Katrina as Bush's fault:

The mainstream media's handline of Hurricane Katrina and the disasters in New Orleans is a disgrace, possibly the worst instance yet of media bias. Insane claims by left-wing nuts that President Bush botched the recovery effort on purpose so as to kill black people are repeated by the MSM in a chin-stroking mode, as if to say, "It's an interesting question--they might be on to something." Meanwhile, no one points out that it was President Bush who implored Governor Blanco to issue a first-ever mandatory evacuation order for the city, an action by the President that probably saved tens of thousands of lives.

Similarly, the media yammmer on and on about the allegedly slow federal response to the hurricane, without noting that the Governor of Louisiana has the power to call out the National Guard. Accusations that lawlessness and looting in New Orleans are somehow the federal government's fault are repeated endlessly; hardly anyone bothers to criticize the looters and other criminals themselves. And where is the outrage that should be directed toward the New Orleans Police Department? They were the authorities on the scene, and they, under the direction of the city's Mayor--who had an emergency plan in place, but apparently made no attempt to implement it--had the responsibility to maintain law and order. Yet some policemen reportedly joined in the looting, while a great many others turned tail and abandoned their responsibilities.


All this and much, much more. Read the whole thing.

Subway perv not sorry

From the New York Daily News, on Dan Hoyt, the subway pervert caught by cameraphone:

With a smirk on his face and a sneer in his voice, accused subway pervert Dan Hoyt shrugged off the sex charges against him as he left a Manhattan courthouse yesterday.

"It's a misdemeanor," the Manhattan restaurateur arrogantly told a Daily News reporter after being arraigned on four counts of public lewdness.

...

Hoyt smiled and yawned through the brief hearing, and sported a self-satisfied look as he left the courthouse - but became camera-shy when he spotted photographers.


The maximum sentence is three months. However, other women have come forward claiming that Hoyt did the same thing to them. Let's hope that each incident is prosecuted and that he serves time for each incident consecutively.

And I still wouldn't eat at his "raw food" restaurant, Quintessence.

Kanye West

Zeke- more brilliance from your man Kanye West:

[AIDS is] a man-made disease in the first place that was placed in Africa just like crack was placed in the black community to break up the Black Panther party.

You can't argue with logic like that. And anyone brilliant enough to discover Whitey's AIDS conspiracy surely can't be wrong that President Bush doesn't care about black people.

From Ace.

Rehnquist dies

Chief Justice Rehnquist has died.

Santorum: I support freedom, as long as it's only exercised by right-wing religious zealots

I have been vehemently anti-Santorum as long as I've known much about him.

Jonathan Rauch explains why:

"Freedom is not self-sufficient," writes Santorum. He claims the Founders' support, and quotes John Adams ("Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people") and George Washington to that effect. But, notes William A. Galston, a University of Maryland political scientist, Washington and (especially) Adams stood at one end of a spectrum of debate, and it was a debate that they ultimately lost.

Read the whole thing. Santorum is scary. If the presidential contest were between Hillary and Santorum, I'd vote for Hillary. I'd also make sure all the dead felon non-citizens I knew voted for her too.

From Instapundit.

Girly Man

Grizzly Man is the documentary about Tim Treadwell, who spent summers camping among grizzly bears in Alaska and finally got eaten by one. The documentary is mostly his own footage that he shot over several summers.

I expected Treadwell to be a Grizzly Adams sort of mountain man. He is anything but. Treadwell is a cross between the blond guy from Queer Eye and a wanna-be Crocodile Hunter. Treadwell is a failed Hollywood actor who claimed to come in second in the tryouts to play Woody on Cheers. He is surprisingly effeminate and flamboyant for someone who spends summers in the Alaskan wilderness, and for someone who claims at length on camera to be heterosexual. He is clearly self-obsessed, and vainly preens on camera to no end.

The maker of the documentary is Werner Herzog, who is not content to let the film speak for itself. He breaks in repeatedly with blindingly obvious commentary and uncalled-for opinion in a thick German accent. The film is at times very funny: we're laughing at Treadwell, not with him. In this way, it's a lot like the brilliant documentary American Movie where the protagonist is the film's central running joke. In Grizzly Man, however, it seems that Herzog is not in on the joke. He's dead serious, and a parody of self-serious nihilistic Germans, when pontificating on his disagreements with Treadwell's philosophy of life.

In spite of Herzog, though, the film is a success. The heavy-handed narration doesn't kill the central joys of watching the beautiful grizzlies and the tragically funny Treadwell.

UPDATE: Radio reviewer Ken Chiampou came up with the same Queer Eye comparison (though he bred Queer Guy with Owen Wilson, not Steve Irwin) -- and had a similar take on the movie overall.

NBC: Bush doing great, loves black people

Rapper Kanye West, speaking at last night's Concert for Hurricane Relief, said that America is set up "to help the poor, the black people, the less well-off as slow as possible," and added, "George Bush doesn't care about black people."

NBC Universal's response: "[West]
departed from the scripted comments … and his opinions in no way represent the views of the networks."

My lord, when will these blacks learn to stop speaking based on what they see, and simply stick to the script that white people give them?

U.N. okay in times of need...

See, the U.N. is great when we can't handle our own disasters and we need help. It's just when we want to go create a disaster somewhere else that the U.N. is a real pain in the ass.

Can we get a part-time membership?

New Orleans

I've been shocked by the anarchy in New Orleans, and I expect horror stories to come out over the next few days and weeks that will sound like something out of a Third World civil war. I also think about the contrast between now and the way New York responded after 9/11. Why did New Yorkers respond with cooperation and compassion while in New Orleans the law of the jungle took over? Are Manhattanites inherently better people than New Orleans residents? Were the circumstances more desperate for a longer period of time in New Orleans? Would New York have degenerated into New Orleans-style anarchy if neglected by authorities for a few days?

OpinionJournal on the chaos:

One frequent reaction we heard yesterday is that the disorder in New Orleans is typical of Third World countries, something that was thought could never happen in America. This happens to overlook a fair chunk of U.S. history, some of it relatively recent, including riots and violence. But it is also a sign of complacency born of prosperity and the resilience of our legal and civic institutions.

This battle of New Orleans should remind us that civic order, even in America, is more fragile than we like to think. After this week and amid the continuing threat of terrorism, our political leaders at all levels are going to have to think harder about how to maintain order in the next crisis.


UPDATE: Lorie Byrd on the comparison between 9/11 and Katrina.

At least Bush didn't cause all this...er, wait...

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - "Bush administration funding cuts forced federal engineers to delay improvements on the levees, floodgates and pumping stations that failed to protect New Orleans from Hurricane Katrina's floodwaters, agency documents showed on Thursday." (story here)

Rich white girls devastated by hurricane...



(AP) "Katie Maucher talks to a friend on her cell phone at the College of Charleston, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2005, in Charleston, S.C., after she transferred to the College of Charleston after Hurricane Katrina damaged Tulane University in New Orleans. Thousands of students affected by Katrina were forced to improvise on their fall-semester plans."

Free spending...fun 'til a hurricane hits

The zero-savings trend, much in vogue these days, apparently has consequences after all.

"Many people didn't have the financial means to get out," said Alan LeBreton, 41, an apartment superintendent who lived on Biloxi, Mississippi's seaside road, now in ruins. "That's a crime and people are angry about it."


People without a rainy-day fund feeling victimized? Wait til' the hurricane of softening in the housing market comes, and misery will have company.

Network news...it's as dumb as you've heard

Some gems from last night's NBC Nightly News:

Brian Williams, opening the news: "This storm, it is clear, will change life in this country."
Yes, we've surely never encountered natural disaster before. Let's make every story 9/11.

Reporter Martin Savidge, prefacing a press conference clip: "The filthy water shifts constantly, creating a hot zone for diseases."
Michael Leavitt, HHS: "We are greatly concerned about cholera, typhoid...diseases that could come as a result of the stagnant water and conditions."
Hey Martin, do you notice an incongruity between "stagnant" and "constantly shifting"?

Brian Williams, on volunteer efforts: "So nice to see the best of humanity revealed in the worst of times."
Hmm...Never mind the previous story about gang fights in the Superdome and looters taking up arms.

Joe Everyman, pumping gas: "You gotta pay the price, whatever it is. Life goes on."
Why does every story about travel delays, gas prices, or supply shortages end with a pacifying quote like this? Like the media's whole job is to keep our heads cool. Just once I'd like to see a story close with, "I can't take it. I'm gonna shoot somebody."
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