Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Yes We Can!

Hugh Hewitt featured Michelle Obama's scary stump speech at UCLA on his radio show. The whole thing is worth listening to for a peek into the Obama World View, but here's what comes at 8:41 in the audio on his site:

"Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed."
I thought I already was working but then I remember that Michelle is making her pitch to a liberal crowd, so warning that her hubby will make them work may be fair warning to Obama supporters who may not have jobs or maintain a casual relationship with labor.
I'm rather fond of my cynicism, which is a prerequisite for listening to the Obamas speechify. When the Obamas are filling up the auditorium with hot air, I like to dial my Cynicism Filter up to about 6, which is the intellectual equivalent of hip waders.
I'm pretty fond of my comfort zone, too, one which I worked all these years to create. I don't want Barrack or anybody else to move me out of it. Mmmm. Comfort zone. Moving everyone out of their comfort zone sounds like something Fidel says right before he demands everyone volunteer their weekends for mandatory work hoeing the fields to fulfill the goals of the Five Year Plan. The Declaration of Independence explicitly states that Americans have the right to pursue happiness. The Declaration of Obama's Wife says Americans should get out of their Happy Place.
The problem with Obama supporters is precisely that they are uninvolved with and uninformed about the real world, making the Obama rhetoric so appealing if you're a knucklehead. The rest of us know a snake oil salesman when we see one, pitching his potion as the remedy for everything.

In related news, Ben & Jerry made the completely unsurprising announcement that they endorse Obama for president. They're donating two "Obamamobiles" to tour Vermont, giving away free scoops of "Cherries for Change" ice cream. This leads us to the great question of the day: What is Obama's flavor?
It has to be some derivative of Neapolitan: chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry. I figure the chocolate is swirled on top with the vanilla while the pink strawberry is hidden under it at the bottom. It's about an inch down, where you can't see it until after you've bought it and dug in to discover that you've got nearly a whole pint of strawberry.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

What Obama Means By Change

Little Green Footballs notes that Obama's campaign office in Houston featured a Cuban flag with Che Guevara's face plastered on it, in this local Fox 26 television interview. In fact, one wasn't enough, there were two. LGF quite reasonably wonders why Obama won't wear a US flag pin on his lapel but his supporters have no reluctance to feature Che's face in Obama's campaign office.
For those who are unfamiliar with Che, he was the architect of Cuba's gulag and secret police, the one who wrote home to his dad after his first execution to tell him he REALLY liked killing people, the guy who went on to kill 1892 people. Che was the one who dispensed with evidence and trials, saying they were obsolete bourgeois artifacts, that people should be executed based on revolutionary necessity, that the people would only learn when taught with the pedagogy of the firing squad. It was Che, the psycho serial killer, who had the doomed tapped for blood donations on the way to their executions, that blood sold for a profit. It was Che who planned to plant incendiary bombs in all the major department stores in New York City on the day after Thanksgiving, the busiest shopping day of the year, a plot that was mercifully discovered and stopped. And he's a hero to the Obama crowd.
Obama has been awfully sketchy about the particular changes he has planned to make America better. Is Che his model? When the flag in the Houston office was brought to Obama's attention, he casually dismissed it as "inappropriate," but didn't ask that it be taken down. This is the same Obama who castigated his fellow senators who wore flag pins as "hypocrites." Cuban/Che flag good. American flag bad.
The Babalu Blog notes:
"Let's see. Castro endorses a Clinton/Obama ticket. Obama has Greg Craig, castro's attorney during the Elian episode, as a senior policy
advisor. He was for lifting the embargo before he was against it. And now his campaign workers put up a picture of Che Guevara that's 3 times as big as Obama's own poster in his campaign office. And a self-respecting Cuban would vote for this guy, why?"
The crazed moonbat Che/Obama lover who hung the Cuban flag appears to be Maria Isabel, a property rights activist who has been engaged in a fight with city hall over her plans to build a McMansion on her plot in the Sixth Ward of Houston. She's quoted in a TV interview as saying, "It’s wrong to try to implement restrictions in my private property. I own this piece of land. This is America. I should be able to do anything I want with it." Well, that's true enough, but an odd thing for somebody to say who flies the flag of communist Cuba, where you have no property rights, or rights of any kind.
Now, the odds are this nutty woman doesn't know who Che is any more than she knows who Obama is. She's probably got scrambled eggs for brains. But both Obama and Che appeal to her for emotional reasons, which is to say her support is irrational. There is no denying that Obama has a powerful appeal for the stupid. It is a terrible spectacle to see the Stupid energized and in motion, bound for a Stupid destination with Stupid intentions.

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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Obama, The Lefty Messiah

"Is Barack Obama The Messiah?", a blog, captures the religious fervor with which lefty airheads are embracing Obama as the Solution To Everything. The trouble is, I'm not sure if it's a parody or another promotion for Obama. With Obamamania, the line between truth and comedy is getting very blurry.
For example, there is Cynthia Keze who tried to squeeze into the Key Arena in Seattle with thousands of others to see, just to see The Future. When she failed in that, she stood out in the rain, hoping to see Obama, to experience Obama, to just feel His Presence.

"The rest of us, we were in this huge crowd outside in the rain and he came out in the rain and talked to us. I was 10 feet away from him, 10 feet away. The only time I felt like that was when I saw Pope John Paul II."
Over and over, Cynthia repeated that she had only been ten feet, JUST TEN FEET, from Obama. Ten feet!
Seattleite Wendy Malabuyo, a 31-year-old engineer, couldn't name anything Obama had ever accomplished but, then, what did that matter?

"He inspires me. I can't even say. … He gives me so much hope. It makes me feel like something will actually change. So I'm speechless. I love him. I love everything he stands for. I love everything that he can bring to this country. And we just need to get him there."
John Cruce, 64, worked thirty years managing records at the State Department in Washington, D.C.. He couldn't think of anything Obama had accomplished either but that's hardly the point:

"Well, I think the biggest thing is he is like a key. He's going to unlock a door that's going to allow us now to pass and finally be able to do some things we would like to do. There are not going to be as many barriers as there have in the past."
Certainly, Obama Love obliterates all the barriers erected by rational thought. Obama need not explain his plans, if he has any, or lay out exactly how he's going to solve the pressing problems of the day. Obama needs only to Be and that's enough. Here's Barack Obama demagoguing away on Super Tuesday:

"We are the hope of the future; the answer to the cynics who tell us our house must stand divided; that we cannot come together; that we cannot remake this world as it should be. Because we know what we have seen and what we believe - that what began as a whisper has now swelled to a chorus that cannot be ignored; that will not be deterred; that will ring out across this land as a hymn that will heal this nation, repair this world, and make this time different than all the rest - Yes. We. Can."

Yes We Can do what, exactly? Obama is going to remake the world, The Entire World, into What It Should Be! And what exactly is that? Obama will let you know later, but trust Obama, it will be Good. How exactly will Obama do this remaking? With Obama Magic, that special voodoo only he can do!? Obama is awfully grandiose in his rhetoric, but he never quite gets into those picky little details.

I watch this Obamafying with amazement. It's like watching the best pickup artist in the world work a bar where they've just passed out free hits of Ecstasy.

It's gotten kinda creepy even for some Obama supporters, like Joel Stein of the LA Times. In his piece, "I've Got Obamaphilia," Stein writes that his mom gets Obama. She nails Obama as Peter Sellers in "Being There," an empty suit hailed as a visionary genius.


Friday, February 08, 2008

Message From Mars

At long last, proof positive of intelligent life on other planets has been delivered by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter which has been searching the Red Planet for traces of water since October 2006. This photo of a smiley face on the desolate surface was taken by a special high-definition camera carried by the NASA space probe in a crater nearly two miles wide in the Nereidum Montes, a mountain range.

While we busy ourselves with our earthly concerns, are we being watched by alien intelligences, cool and unsympathetic, studying us through their telescopes like we might scrutinize bugs through a microscope? Is this Martian mockery? If so, I don't care for it, not one little bit. Sure, attack us if you must, but we won't put up with abuse from a bunch of weenie-ass Martian maggots.

Or is this some sort of prank carried out by three-armed Martian teenagers carving out giant smiley faces on their dune buggies? If so, it's hardly proof of superior intelligence but rather of the poor parental discipline of a Martian ghetto where kids just run wild.

Or are they just telling us to have a nice day?

Why The West Is Best

Ibn Warraq summarizes why Western values are superior to Islam in the excellent City Journal:
"A culture that gave the world the novel; the music of Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert; and the paintings of Michelangelo, da Vinci, and Rembrandt does not need lessons from societies whose idea of heaven, peopled with female virgins, resembles a cosmic brothel. Nor does the West need lectures on the superior virtue of societies in which women are kept in subjection under sharia, endure genital mutilation, are stoned to death for alleged adultery, and are married off against their will at the age of nine; societies that deny the rights of supposedly lower castes; societies that execute homosexuals and apostates. The West has no use for sanctimonious homilies from societies that cannot provide clean drinking water or sewage systems, that make no provisions for the handicapped, and that leave 40 to 50 percent of their citizens illiterate."

Why don't you read it all? And if you like that, you might try his book, "Why I Am Not A Muslim," a rather thorough, devastating, intellectual critique of Islam.


Monday, February 04, 2008

Thank Allah The Americans Have Him

Michael Yon in "Sons of Iraq" reports how peace has broken out in Mulhallah 838 & 840, neighborhoods in south Baghdad. While back in the States the loony lefties in orange jumpsuits smarmily decry fictional American abuse of prisoners in Gitmo et al, the Iraqis are more closely in touch with reality:

"Numerous times I have seen Iraqis come up to American commanders asking about a family member or friend who was detained. When they learn that Americans have detained the person, they are relieved. But if they find he is in Iraqi government custody, there is dread and despair.

"Colonel Gibbs told the story of an Iraqi man who turned in his own two sons to Gibbs’ Fourth Brigade, First Infantry Division. The man said he knew if the sons were guilty they would be held, but if innocent would be released. Following an investigation they kept one son and released the other. Smart father.

"It’s better to be in an American detention facility than have Special Forces blasting down your door. After all, Gibbs’ brigade has suffered 89 Killed in Action (KIA), and over 700 wounded. This war is for keeps."

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Danger, Will Robinson!

For those ten year old boys from 1965 who never grew up, another dream has come true. You can buy your own robot from "Lost In Space" for only $24,500, including shipping within the US. Space Productions have painstakingly made a replica of the robot based on the third season version.

They have three guys working full time making sets of four robots at a time, about one set per month, about ten sets per year. They plan to make 150 robots, all of which are reserved by customers. However, don't despair. Some customers drop out and robots come up for sale. You still have a chance of nabbing one.

They call their replica B9, but the robot never really was given a name. Some folks call the "Lost In Space" robot Robby, mistaking it for the robot from the 1956 sci fi classic "Forbidden Planet." Both robots were designed by Robert Kinoshita, so they're siblings of a sort.

You can covertly control the robot with a five button key chain remote control which will turn the robot's torso, make the robot answer "Affirmative" or "Negative," and activate its soil sampler. Richard Tufeld, the original voice of the robot, recorded 500 voice tracks which can be played on the onboard stereo. In fact, you can plug your stereo into the robot and play tunes on it like a juke box, which seems an undignified use, in my opinion.

In the original show, stunt man Bob May climbed inside the robot and spoke its lines while jamming on a button which flashed the robot's lights. Later, Dick Tufeld dubbed in the robot voice in post-production.

The original robot is owned by Kevin Burns, a 20th Century Fox executive. A friend had prodded him to go find the original robot. He found it in big airline freight trunks labeled "Friday's Robot" on Stage 2. Japanese customers had last used the robot but got the Robinson family mixed up with Robinson Crusoe and thought the robot was playing Friday.

There were two versions of the robot. One was the full up "hero" version which was filmed. The other was a lighter version used as a stand in to set up lighting. The hero in the trunks had been butchered by the Japanese into "a big white refrigerator with claws."

Burns hired Greg Jein, a master model-builder for film and television, to restore the robot for an estimate of $4000 to $5000. Jein had salvaged the original Jupiter 2 model and other props from the series from the trash where it had been thrown after the series was cancelled after three seasons.

The robot was shipped, still wet, to a December 1990 convention where thousands of fans celebrated the 25th anniversary of the show. There were plans to bring the cast together to do one last TV movie of "Lost In Space," but marketing surveys showed that its audience had moved on. It was not to be.

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Friday, February 01, 2008

Musharraf In Davos

Jay Nordlinger of National Review Online reports from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on Pakistan President Musharraf:

"Time and again, this has happened at Davos: A journalist (usually British or American) will ask a question loaded with anti-American bias. And the leader being questioned will say something defensive about America. I will briefly recapitulate a most memorable instance: Americans had just conducted a strike on a target in Pakistan; the Pakistani leadership had not been told in advance about this strike. Someone asked Pervez Musharraf, “How can you tolerate such arrogance and cowboyism from the Americans?” (Again, I am paraphrasing.) “They did not inform you; they violated your precious Pakistani sovereignty. And you are quite rightly a proud people. How can you stand these Americans?”

"Musharraf answered essentially as follows: “Yes, it is true that we would have liked to know about the strike. And it is true that we are a proud people, jealous of our sovereignty. But what about al-Qaeda? They are all foreigners — from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Chechnya, and all over. They have no right to be on our territory. They are violating our sovereignty. How come no one ever mentions that? And the Americans are helping us get rid of these foreigners.”

"I think that the room was actually shamed."