Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Watcher's Council Nominations, 9/19/07

Every week, the Watcher's Council members nominate two posts each, one from the Council members and one from outside for consideration by the whole Council. The complete list of this week's Council nominations can be found at the site of our fearless leader, the infamous Watcher of Weasels

Do take the time and check out the non-Council links..they are always rewarding.

Here's this week's Council lineup....

1. JOSHUAPUNDIT : America Must be Defeated! I examine the blatant insults General Petraeus endured this week in the Senate, along with the Democrat leadership's attitudes towards the infamous MoveOn `Petraeus - Betray US' ad and come to the obvious conclusion - the Democrats, for the most part are invested in America's defeat. And since MoveOn and the rest of the Angry Left are now pretty much calling the shots for the Democrats, they're simply being more open about it.

Needless to say, defeat has consequences. Always.

I think you'll like the graphic that goes with this...

2. Done With Mirrors: What Did I Miss? Callimachus gets a major high five from me for expressing so well something in the first half of his essay that I'm sure all of us who are involved in what he calls the war of words have felt..frustration, boredom and ennui.

Nevertheless, it's the war we've got, this is our way of fighting it and opting out is defeat by default, I think. And for my part, I hope Callimachus continues on...I'd miss reading what he has to say.

In the other half of his post, Cal has brief takes on global warming, the likelihood of events taking over the conventional political wisdom,the likelihood of the Democrats actually convincing people they can be trusted to run national security and
1930's model and photographer Lee Miller's breasts.

3. Soccer Dad: Deterring the Deterrers Soccer Dad has a fine post that explores what happens when politics, paranoia and a fear of bad press take precedence over common sense...using, in this case, Israel's frequent vacillations on wiping out the murderers who plan and institute `operations' that kill innocent civilians and attack the country.

When democracies play this game, especially in the Middle East, here's what happens: First, instead of getting credit for restraint, it emboldens ones enemies to commit even greater atrocities, because the bar has been raised.Second, it makes one's own soldiers more reluctant to risk their lives for incomplete results, especially if some Leftist ideologue is going to use the legal system to pillory them, as Soccer Dad points out. And third, it results in a higher death toll, both from the increased casualties among ones own people as your enemies are emboldened to greater efforts to kill more, and among the enemy, particularly civilians, when the hammer finally comes down and a country like Israel is forced to take extreme measures.

I'm sure there were others, but the first person I'm aware of who noticed what happens with ill-considered restraint in these types of situations was Napoleon, talking about controlling riots in Paris when he was still a general for the revolutionary government of the Directoire. And he was dealing with the French, not Arabs!

So much simpler and more humane to do what needs doing the first time, save lives, and simply wait out the news cycle.

4. The Glittering Eye : Why? What? When? The Glittering Eye's Dave Schuler didn't like President Bush's last speech on Iraq, and it's hard for me to disagree with him. President Bush's strongpoint has never been communication, and at this point much of what he has to say has been compromised by some of his earlier dichotomies between rhetoric and action anyway. I always defer to my mom's wisdom when it comes to things like this...`if you don't have something constructive to say, zip it!'

5. Bookworm Room: Freedom, But From What? Ms. Bookworm has a fascinating post that examines the idea of privacy..what it is, the choices we make to compromise it and with whom, and most importantly the difference between the liberal and conservative attitudes towards privacy as it involves the government.

As Ms. Bookworm points out, while conservatives are willing to trust the government when it comes to running the job of security from our enemies while not wanting government more privy to the details of their private lives than absolutely necessary, the Left is just the opposite. They're willing to trust the government with the running and intimate details of their private lives, but distrust them to handle security:

"Liberals, on the other hand, who are willing to hand over to the government so many aspects of their private lives, are loath to surrender their security to the government. Instead, when it comes to security, they look at the same government they trust to examine their bodies, make their health care decisions, educate their children, rescue their poor, and control their businesses, and suddenly start ranting that it is out to get them, whether to destroy their buildings and their citizens, listen to their phone calls, or read the same library books they do."

6. Rhymes With Right:California Legislature Intent On Violating California Constitution Greg's post looks at the furor currently being directed at Governor Arnold Schwartznegger because he's told the Democrat-controlled state legislature that he will veto a measure that they passed to allow same sex marriages in California...because the people of California already voted on this issue when they passed Proposition 22, the Protection of Marriage initiative, by 61 to 39 percent.

I've got news for you, Greg ol' buddy... speaking as one who lives in California, the ilk who compose a majority in our legislature could care less what the average Californian thinks or what the state constitution says, since their seats are gerrymandered into virtual permanent party fiefdoms. Governor Schwartznegger isn't perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but to his credit he made an honest attempt to present the people of California with an honest choice by presenting four initiatives that would have helped end this lockstep - and they were all defeated, thanks to vast infusions of cash from various interested parties and partly because the governor took on two many people at one time, IMO.

This will probably end up as largely a charade...the governor gets points for adhering to principle, and the Democrats get a few political points with one of their constituencies while wasting the taxpayers' money creating meaningless legislation they don't have the votes to push through over a veto.

7.Colossus of Rhodey:I'd Like To Buy Into It, And Then I Read On...Hube does a good job of fisking a bogus study
that purports to address the racial achievement gap and supposedly shows that principals or teachers can have a bigger impact on achievement in one year than whether a child is poor or from a single-parent home.

Of course culture, or the attitudes expressed in the home towards the importance of education have nothing to do with the a child's academic achievement.....ri-ight.

8. Cheat Seeking Missiles: LA Times: "No Blood For Oil" Lackey This week,Laer provides an excellent example of why the dinosaur media's credibility is at an all time low.

The subject is the headlines and above the fold comment that occurred when Alan Greenspan, pimping his new book put out a soundbite that much of the dinosaur media glommed onto like a rat on cheese,that the Iraq war was `largely about oil'.

Greenspan, of course later clarified things by stating the obvious...that what he meant was that removing of Saddam Hussein had been "essential" for the security of world oil supplies, a point he claims to have emphasized to the White House in private conversations before the 2003 invasion.

9. Just When You Thought You Had Something Figured Out by Okie On The Lam This week, Okie compares the tough talk by French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner on Iran with his previous impression that France would be useless in the war against Islamists.

I agree with Okie's take that what's prompting the new hard line from Franc and other Europeans is the realization that they've been idiots up to now, and the real fear on their part that if the US doesn't curtail Iran's nuclear weapons program,Israel is likely to...which would force them to choose sides between the Jews and their Arab friends.

France in particular is trying to minimize their inevitable vulnerability brought on by years on pandering to Arabs, and is now involved in the deporting of Arab illegal immigrants ( and even some legal ones), passing new citizenship laws and curtailing immigration from certain areas.

10. Right Wing Nuthouse: Is War With Iran Now Just A Matter Of Time? Rick also has Iran and Kouchner's remarks on his mind, and wonders whether war can still be avoided.

Given that the Iranians have, by their own admission been at war with the US since 1979, and given their current activities it seems a moot question.

We could, of course, put this off for a while, but anyone who favors this needs to answer the following questions...first,if the Israelis hadn't destroyed Saddam's Osirak reactor, would you rather have taken on Saddam in the first Gulf War a few years later with Iraq armed with nuclear weapons or without?

Second, if one of the Democrat front runners wins the White House and becomes commander- in- chief in 17 months, is that whom you want as a war president?

I'd also point out, yet again that if we act now,the invasion/occupation scenario we used in Iraq isn't necessary in the least.

11.The Education Wonks: Exploitation? EdWonk takes on the story of Maddison Gabriel, the 12 year old Australian model who was chosen to front one of the world's largest fashion shows, the Gold Coast Fashion Week in Australia.

This is similar to the notion of child actors, in a way, since it involves putting a vulnerable child in a situation where the child is encouraged to exploit their sexuality while surrounded by a large number of sleazy people who are essentially amoral and are poor role models, to say the least.

While Maddison's mother is all for this and seems to think that nothing wrong is going on,one wonders how much monitoring and parenting she's actually able to do in this situation.

12. Big Lizards: "Surge A Failure, Democrats Tell General" Daffyd Ab Hugh finds the notion of Senate Democrats telling General Petraeus that his strategy is a failure without any kind of factual critique to be absolutely absurd, if not insulting.

So do I.

That's this week's lineup..enjoy

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