Ed Driscoll

Ed Driscoll

Ed Schultz, you wacky scamp, you:

Even The Washington Post is picking up juicy gossip from The Daily Caller. A long-running lawsuit against Ed Schultz from NBC producer Michael Queen revealed e-mails from Schultz “in which he’s less than complimentary about his now-MSNBC brother, Chris Matthews.”

In a May 2008 e-mail to Queen, Schultz mocked Matthews: “Do you think it’s a good idea if I spit all over myself like Chris Mathews [sic] during the pilot?…What the f***? Every time he gives a commentary he’s foaming at the mouth? Does the guy have some condition we don’t know about?”

Many have speculated

The Secret Masonic Policeman’s Ball

May 6th, 2015 - 6:27 pm

Note to California Democrats, the Big Bang Theory was not intended to be a how-to guide. Honest.

Shot:

Uniformed Pasadena Policeman: Your friend here called 911 to report a robbery.

Leonard: Oh, my God, what did they get?

Sheldon: What didn’t they get? They got my enchanted weapons, my vicious gladiator armor, my wand of untainted power, and all my gold.

Leonard: You called the police because someone hacked your World of Warcraft account?

Sheldon: What choice did I have? The mighty Sheldor, level 85 blood elf, hero of the Eastern kingdoms, has been picked clean, like a carcass in the desert sun. Plus, the FBI hung up on me. [Sheldon begins to hyperventilate.]

Policeman: [Breathe] into the bag.

Sheldon: They took my battle ostrich.

Leonard: Oh, no, not Glenn?

Sheldon: Yes, Glenn! The only bird I ever loved.

Policeman: Good luck, fellas.

Leonard: Thank you, officer.

Sheldon: Wait a minute! You’re not going to do anything?

Policeman: Mr. Cooper, there’s nothing…

Sheldon: Doctor Cooper.

Policeman: Seriously?

Leonard: Not the kind with access to drugs.

Policeman: Fine. Dr. Cooper. I’m sorry for your loss, but the Pasadena Police Department doesn’t have jurisdiction in Pandora.

Sheldon: That’s from Avatar; World of Warcraft takes place in Azeroth! Goodness gracious, how are you allowed to carry a gun? Can you at least refer me to a rogue ex-cop?

Policeman: What?

Sheldon: You know, one who was drummed off the force because he refused to play by the rules, and now he hires himself out to impose his own brand of rough justice?

Policeman: No.

The Big Theory, Season 4, Episode 19 – “The Zarnecki Incursion,” March 31st, 2011.

Chaser:

masonic_police_department_badge_5-6-15-1This week, the three people were charged with impersonating police officers. They are David Henry, who told Johnson he was the police chief, Tonette Hayes and Brandon Kiel, an aide to state Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris.

It turns out Henry, Hayes and Kiel had allegedly introduced themselves to police agencies across the state, though it is unclear why. A website claiming to represent their force cites connections to the Knights Templars that they say go back 3,000 years. The site also said that the department had jurisdiction in 33 states and Mexico.

“When asked what is the difference between the Masonic Fraternal Police Department and other police departments, the answer is simple for us. We were here first!” the website said.

* * * * * * * *

Employees at the Backwoods Inn restaurant in Santa Clarita remember a day about a month ago when Henry — a regular customer — walked in with a swagger.

He wore a dark blue police uniform with badges and insignia on both arms. He told the staff at the country western-themed eatery off the Sierra Highway he was a police chief and handed out his business card with pride.

It read MASONIC FRATERNAL POLICE DEPARTMENT in capital letters and identified Henry as Chief Henry 33.

“He was very big on saying ‘I’m the chief, I’m the chief,’” said one server who talked to him when he stopped by two or three times a week. She spoke on the condition that her name not be used.

* * * * * * *

The exact structure of the purported police department was unclear. But on the website, Henry is referred to as “Absolute Supreme Sovereign Grandmaster.”

“Bizarre fake police force included Kamala Harris aide, prosecutors say,” the L.A. Times reports. Naturally, the party that Harris, the state’s attorney general belongs to isn’t identified. Two guesses as to which party that is, given that it’s the L.A. Times.

Not surprisingly, Ace is having lots of fun with the copy on the homepage of the “Masonic Fraternal Police Department” Website, which sounds even more like a Big Bang parody, except that Sheldon & Co. actually know how how to spell, use apostrophes and quotation marks, and know something about history:

You’re not going to believe this — despite not being real, and also being crazy, and also being criminals, and also being Democrats, they have a website.

The Masonic Fraternal Organization is the oldest and most respected organization in the “World.”

The “world.” Not the world, but the “world.”

We’re off to a roaring start here, folks. Either they are illiterate, or they are paranoids who aren’t sure the “world” is the world.

Grand Masters around the various states are facing serious safety concerns for their Jurisdictions and their family members. The first Police Department was created by the “Knights Templar’s” back in 1100 B.C.

The “Knights Templar’s.” What is that apostrophe doing in there? It’s Knights Templar.

And the Knights Templar were created around 1100 A.D., but that’s Democrat education for ya.

The Masonic Fraternal Police Department, (M.F.P.D.) is the Knights Templar’s!

Here’s a screen cap of the above portion of their homepage in case, like the original “Knights Templar’s” themselves, it disappears into the mists of history:

masonic_police_department_5-6-15-1

Click to enlarge. But only if you can tell me first, what is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?

So what does it all mean? Hey, as Moe Lane writes, plunging the sword of Excalibur into the carcass of  this one great state, “What’s that? Oh, the fact that California AG Kamala Harris has somebody trying to establish a Masonic foothold in American law enforcement? …Dude, it’s California. They do weird stuff out there even when they’re not in a drought. Imagine how the state will get when everybody is thirsty all the time…”

Related: And speaking of “weird stuff,” “Lawsuit spells out ‘nightmare’ for California man accused without evidence,” Ashe Schow writes at the Washington Examiner, on a horrific Kafka-esque story out of the formerly Golden State.

sharpton_baltimore_mayor_5-3-15-1

NBC’s Al Sharpton shakes hands with Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake as she prepares to speak at a summit to address issues surrounding the death of Freddie Gray and its aftermath at New Shiloh Baptist Church, Thursday, April 30, 2015, in Baltimore. Note the “No Justice, No Peace” slogan behind them. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

“What causes civilizations to collapse, from a dysfunctional 4th-century-B.C. Athens to contemporary bankrupt Greece?,” asks Victor Davis Hanson. “The answer is usually not enemies at the gates, but the pathologies inside them.” After first noting the huge unpaid tax bills by Al Sharpton and other NBC spokespersons, and Lois Lerner’s attacks on innocent Americans who did pay their taxes, in Investor’s Business Daily, VDH writes:

If the Obama administration reaches a controversial agreement with Iran that will not meet the constitutional test of ratification by two-thirds of the Senate, then it will not be called a treaty and instead be imposed by presidential executive order.

Prosecutors have never been more ideologically driven. Sen. Bob Menendez, D-N.J., opposes administration policies on Cuba and Iran — and then suddenly faces federal indictments on charges covering a period from 2006 to 2013.

In the tragic Freddie Gray case, Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby all but assured an angry crowd that she had provided them indictments for murder and manslaughter and thereby expected calm in the streets in return.

She indicted six Baltimore policemen on charges that are likely to be reduced or disproved in court, but those charges served the short-term purpose of defusing unchecked rioting and looting. Warping the law was thought to be more effective in easing tensions than enforcing it.

Increasingly in the United States, the degree to which a law is enforced — or whether a person is indicted — depends on political considerations. But when citizens do not pay any income taxes, or choose not to pay taxes that they owe and expect impunity, a complex society unwinds.

And when the law becomes negotiable, civilization utterly collapses.

If so, then the conflagration whipped up over the past two weeks by the DNC-MSM will be seen as a significant mile marker on the road to perdition. Regarding last week’s riots, in his weekly PJM column, VDH decodes “The Rules of Baltimore.” As for how the media have portrayed the events in Garland on Sunday, well:

“Al Jazeera America Chief Is Ousted After Turmoil,” the New York Times report:

Al Jazeera America announced Wednesday that it was replacing its chief executive, Ehab Al Shihabi, who has been in that position since the network was founded two years ago.

It has been a difficult week for the network; three top executives left the company and another former employee sued it claiming wrongful termination. One of the executives who departed, Marcy McGinnis, said Mr. Al Shihabi meddled with news decisions and fostered a “culture of fear.”

Of course, Shihabi’s former bosses in the home office in Qatar really took that whole “culture of fear” thing seriously when it came to their neighbors in the Middle East. Or as Hugh Hewitt asked former MSNBC and CNN castoff Soledad O’Brien last year, ”’Businessweek’ today has a story on Qatar, which owns Al Jazeera, and the headline calls Qatar a patron of Islamists. It says that Qatar funds and arms Islamists fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad and bankrolling Hamas in the Gaza Strip. So here’s an honest question. How can you take money from them?”

At the left-leaning Daily Beast today, Lloyd Grove asks, “Is Al Jazeera Sexist, Anti-Semitic, and Anti-American?” If they’re not guilty on three counts, their home office must be very disappointed by them, no?

But in any case, considering that as of last year, Al Jazeera America was “averaging approximately 10,000 viewers at any given point during the day,” it’s entirely possible that the fictional Wayne and Garth would have gotten more viewers for their Aurora Illinois public access show than the amount of real-life viewers tuning in to watch Al Jazeera America. Just how wide is the divergence between what Oren Kessler of the Middle Eastern Quarterly dubbed “The Two Faces of Al Jazeera” back in 2012?

Likely not all much; “Pass the Popcorn: Al Jazeera America Being Sued for Sexism and Anti-Semitism,” I wrote on Sunday. Or as John Podhoretz tweets today, “It would take a heart of stone not to laugh aloud at the troubles besetting al-Jazeera.”

Update: So what did the Times mean by Shihabi’s “culture of fear?” This:

The problem, according to current and former staffers interviewed by the Times, lies in its leadership: the head of Al Jazeera America, Ehab Al Shihabi, has created a culture of low morale and fear of retaliation in the newsroom, as well as a hint of sexism, and, um, why has the Middle East correspondent gone missing from the office? (The network won’t hurt for money, mainly because it’s financed “from the deep pockets of the Qatar government”.)

As a prime example — and there are lots of examples in the story — here’s how Al Shihabi allegedly treated one of the network’s stars:

The station’s most recognizable face, Ali Velshi, a veteran of CNN, who hosts a prime-time show, led a similar meeting in February. Mr. Velshi’s line of questioning and his exchanges with Mr. Al Shihabi were particularly heated, according to five people present at the meeting.

Days later, when Mr. Velshi was not present, Mr. Al Shihabi threatened to sue Mr. Velshi and fire him, according to employees who said they heard him speaking openly in the newsroom.

“I’ll spend whatever I have to spend to bankrupt him in court,” Mr. Al Shihabi said, according to one employee who was there. Another heard Mr. Al Shihabi say, “He’s finished here.”

Classy. But in any case, as we’ve seen this week, “Who needs Al-Jazeera when you’ve got CNN?”

15 Minutes Into the Future

May 6th, 2015 - 12:26 pm

Shot:

1. To speak of Islamist violence, or to suggest there is a problem in Islam, is racist, and hateful, and irrational, and “islamophobic.”

2. It is so predictable that Islamists will kill you if you say something “anti-Islamic” that victims of murder attempts can be said to have brought their attacks on themselves.

Two other hard-to-reconcile claims:

1. Islam is compatible with Western values.

2. We’re going to have to change some core Western values to avoid violence from our new Muslim friends.

“Two Contradictory Claims the Left Urges On Us,” Ace, today.

Chaser:

I am trying to imagine the coming American “utopia”, where everyone will be compelled to publicly accept the moral neutrality of homosexual acts, traditional Christian teachings on the subject will be excluded from the the marketplace of ideas, but an enormous cultural carve-out will be made for Muslim sensibilities. If Islamist radicals shoot up a gay pride parade, will the incident simply be considered a moral wash, or will gays actually be expected to apologize for provoking their assailants?

Halp me Garrie Trudoe I’m stuk hear in america and cant figyour out all this morul relativizm!

“Cognitive dissonance,” the Paco Enterprises blog, yesterday.

And the answer is: It depends on quickly the MSM can memory hole the terrorist attack. Beyond this week’s blanket “The bitch had it coming” response from the MSM to Pam Geller, it will be interesting to see how long her event in Garland stays in the mind of the collective overculture, or how quickly it’s airbrushed away.

Until, God forbid, it happens again, either to her, or the hypothetical gay pride parade that Paco describes above.

Update: Hey, it’s only a matter of time:

 

This is CNN

May 6th, 2015 - 12:01 pm

“CNN Anchor Chris Cuomo “Says Constitution Doesn’t Protect Hate Speech, Try Reading It. Okay, Let’s Do That,” Robby Soave writes at Reason: 

This was in response to the shooting outside Pamela Geller’s “Draw Muhammad” cartoon contest event in Garland, Texas. According to Cuomo, Geller and her ilk might not have a First Amendment right to express anti-Muslim speech deemed hateful—it says so, right there in the Constitution, if we would bother to read it.

Okay, let’s take Cuomo’s challenge. Let’s read the speech part of the Constitution. (I hope this doesn’t take too long; I hate reading.) Oh, good, the speech stuff is right there at the beginning of the “things you can do” section:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

My copy of the Constitution seems to be missing this fabled “except hate speech, none of that” clause.

As it turns out, the Supreme Court has consistently interpreted the First Amendment to protect all kinds of odious speech, including speech perceived to be hateful. Constitutional speech protections wouldn’t be very strong if they did not include hate speech, since one person’s statement of hate is another’s statement of truth. “George Bush is a war criminal” might be construed as a hateful statement if you’re George Bush, after all.

Peter Wehner of Commentary pens a very Obama-esque description of the CNN anchor:

Chris Cuomo is a man who thinks he’s much smarter than he is, who is clearly not nearly as widely read as he pretends, and who possesses what looks to be a perfectly dogmatic mind, closed to any evidence that challenges his suppositions. He is both unusually ignorant and unusually arrogant. Those are unfortunate qualities for anyone to possess; they are particularly unfortunate to see in a public figure, where his ignorance can be exposed on quite a large stage.

Wehner adds that when confronted by those like Robby Soave of Reason, who did read the Constitution, Cuomo simply lied: “No, no, no, Cuomo argues; he didn’t mean read the Constitution (although that’s what he wrote); he meant read case law. Of course he did.”

Which brings us to Allahpundit at Hot Air, who notes that Cuomo is replying on “the ‘Chaplinsky test,’ a.k.a. the ‘fighting words’ doctrine:”

He’s eating crap from righties and lefties alike as I write this for reading too much into what the Chaplinsky decision allows. That’s the case, handed down by the Supreme Court in 1942, that says the First Amendment doesn’t protect words “which, by their very utterance, inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace.” Over time federal courts have narrowed that ruling to make clear that it only applies, in Ken White’s words, to “face-to-face insults that would provoke an immediate violent reaction from a reasonable person.” In other words, says Instapundit, a “personal invitation to brawl.” All true, but it’s painfully easy to move from that standard to a standard in which “hateful” speech qualifies as “fighting words” whether or not it’s uttered face to face, whether or not the violent reaction is immediate, and whether or not a reasonable person from the “majority” might object to it. Pam Geller’s Mohammed cartoon contest is a perfect example. That was a private event, not a face-to-face demonstration in front of a group of Muslims; most Americans would say that cartoons of any figure, no matter how insulting, don’t justify a violent response; and there was no reason to expect that the violent reaction, if it came, would be an immediate attack on the event itself rather than a plot to target Geller or her allies later. It should fail the Chaplinsky test easily. (And Cuomo, in fairness, isn’t saying otherwise.)

Read the whole thing for a chilling look at where lefties such as Cuomo and his ilk could eventually gut the First Amendment into meaninglessness.

In the meantime though, Googling “Chris Cuomo” and “Charlie Hebdo” quickly brings up the classic moment in January when Cuomo described black French terrorists as “African-American” on the air at CNN, just to give you a sense of the steel-trap mind we’re dealing with here.

And finally, an Allahpundit-esque exit question from Glenn Reynolds: “Will any journos ask Andrew Cuomo if he shares Chris’s view of free speech?” Or Hillary.

Reading Allahpundit’s post, it seems obvious what Democrat politicians really do think about the topic in their socialist heart of hearts, but it would useful to get them on the record alongside Chris Cuomo and many of their other operatives with bylines this week.

Related:

“25 Years Of Predicting The Global Warming ‘Tipping Point’” are collated by Michael Bastasch of the Daily Caller, which we’re happy to add to to our growing “Final Countdown” files. It’s a great list of epic enviro-wacko failures, though I’m not sure if  Bastasch is right here:

9. The “tipping point” warning first started in 1989

In the late 1980s the U.N. was already claiming the world had only a decade to solve global warming or face the consequences.

The San Jose Mercury News reported on June 30, 1989 that a “senior environmental official at the United Nations, Noel Brown, says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the earth by rising sea levels if global warming is not reversed by the year 2000.”

That prediction didn’t come true 15 years ago, and the U.N. is sounding the same alarm today.

This might have been the kick off of the far left’s global warming tipoffs, and as Andrea Mitchell* of NBC admitted the following year, “clearly the networks have made the decision now, where you’d have to call it advocacy,” leaving any shred of objectivity long by the wayside, as we’ve seen. (And increasingly, as the rest of the MSM now openly admits.)

But the now exhausted formula of “We only have [fill in time period] to save the planet” dates back at least to the first Earth Day in 1970, as the I Hate the Media blog noted in 2009 with their own list of expired not-so-final countdowns. Though the big nightmares back then, thanks in part to Paul Ehrlich’s infamous Population Bomb doomsday hectoring of 1968, were starvation, overpopulation, and global cooling. And speaking of the latter item, it was in 1976 that “climatologists said that that global cooling caused drought and fires in California, and produced catastrophic erratic weather globally,” Steve Goddard  wrote on Monday, as evidenced by a press clipping from the New York Times that Goddard has scanned. And don’t miss Jerry Brown on the California drought, then and now.

* Buried lede: Andrea Mitchell once said something accurate. Hard to believe, I know.

The Urban Dictionary defines the British word “blagger” (and yes, I reflexively typed it with an “o” before correcting myself) as a salesman “who could sell ice to the Eskimos.” The London Daily Mail reports, “A blagger pretended to be part of Leonardo DiCaprio’s entourage to get ringside at the ‘fight of the century’ and was even defended by Floyd Mayweather after he was rumbled by security:”

Steve Carruthers, 24, from Hull in East Yorkshire, put on his best suit and waited outside the MGM Grand Garden Arena ahead of Manny Pacquiao and Mayweather’s big fight on Saturday.

When he spotted the A-list actor he followed behind his team straight into the VIP bar, where he mingled with the likes of Christian Bale, Donald Trump, Michael Keaton and Paris Hilton.

Even after the fight he thought he’d try his luck once more in a bid to meet the fighting legends and joined journalists filtering past security teams and waiting outside their dressing rooms.

But the business graduate, who is on a six-week trip to the U.S., was caught out by the MGM security team when he asked Mayweather for an autograph.

He thought his luck was up but to Mr Carruthers’ surprise Mayweather turned to one of the guard’s and said ‘I’ve got him’, before inviting him to his press conference and posing for photos.

It’s all fun and games when you’re backstage and partying with the Hollywood stars, until you have to apologize the next day to Raquel Welch.

Spot on observation by Ace, who spots bipartisan attacks on Pam Geller in the overculture and responds “I have long ago decided that I do not wish to be on the list of the Acceptable Ones, and will take no action whatsoever to secure my place upon it. Maybe I have an advantage here: I do not seek the approval of those who bestow Respectability, as I simply do not respect them.”

Noting that “as a personal matter, I have had sharp differences with Ms. Geller. We do not get along. But this is entirely besides the point,” he adds:

A woman spoke.

Men with guns shot at her for speaking.

Do we really need to take an “on the one hand, on the other hand” approach here.

And we need not talk about “tone” or whether Ms. Gellar speaks for us on all things.

One does not award Style Points on a battlefield.

This is why we have no actual conservative movement worth a damn: Because our political officers and our thought leaders are all drawn from, and aspire to advance in, the same Upper Middle Class Northeast-and-California cultural consensus of “respectability.”

Some people are ideologues are are intensely and primarily interested in Ideas.

Most are not.

And thus most people’s first loyalty is not to any abstract Idea, but the more tangible Class they come from, and which gives them Identity, which gives them Place in the world, and which is, for far too many thinkers, a major source of pride and, I dare say, egotistical joy.

The current dominant class, the class that controls the political-media establishment, is this Upper Middle Class, leftism-inflected consensus, and until people can begin seeing this and seeing past it, and until they can begin making their first loyalty to Idea and Principle, which are universal and eternal, rather than Class and Cult, which are nothing but happenstance and ego, we will continue having an “opposition” which continues genuflecting to leftist conformity rather than standing up for ideas.

Which also explains why some elites on both sides of the aisle could defend Charlie Hebdo — a French socialist publication, by its very nature, has a certain amount of exotic, elitist cache — and turn their backs on an American conservative woman, largely because of her tone. But then, tone and class are often interchangeable signifiers for elite status. They explain why William F. Buckley, P.J. O’Rourke and Tom Wolfe could move fluidly through the elite (left-dominated) overculture, and why say, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, and the late Andrew Breitbart were never accepted.

Oh, and just to place the past couple of days into perspective, Katie Pavlich writes at Towhall that “ISIS has officially taken responsibility for the attack Sunday night on a Muhammad art exhibit in Garland, Texas. This is the first official ISIS attack to be be carried out on U.S. soil.”

Which the Washington Post demands the principal victim apologize for.

charlie_hebdo_wtc_1-30-15-1

“Event organizer offers no apology after thwarted attack in Texas,” the Washington Post has the gall to write after Pam Geller, her speakers and/or guests were nearly murdered on Sunday. Not surprisingly, in a post titled “JFK offers no apology after Lee Harvey Oswald shoots him in the head,” Geller tells the leftwing paper to pound sand. “What apology exactly do I owe for almost being murdered?”

“Abraham Lincoln offers no apology after John Wilkes Booth lodges a bullet in his brain”

“Julius Caesar offers no apology after Cassius and Brutus stab him to death”

“Jews offer no apology after Nazis kill six million”

As Twitchy asks, “What exactly should she apologize for? What’s, next? Maybe, ‘Pam Geller attacked by Islamic fanatics because her skirt is too short”?”

Old: I object to your statement but will fight to the death for your right to say it,” The Draw and Strike blog tweets. “New: I object to your statement, and if some religious fanatic kills you over it, you totally deserved it.”

“I expected that in the wake of the attempted terrorist assault on a “draw Muhammad” event in Texas, people would write dumb things about speech,” Ken White writes at the Popehat blog, “American journalists have not disappointed me:”

Responding to an equally egregious attack on Geller’s First Amendment rights from two “journalists” at the McClatchey wire service, White notes:

You can talk to me all day about how Geller is a nasty, scary nutjob, and I’m unlikely to disagree much. But that has no bearing on whether her speech is, or should be, protected. We don’t need a First Amendment to protect the soothing and the sensible.

Read the whole thing.

Quote of the Day

May 5th, 2015 - 12:10 am

The welfare state has led to remarkably similar trends among the white underclass in England over the same period. Just read Life at the Bottom, by Theodore Dalrymple, a British physician who worked in a hospital in a white slum neighborhood.

You cannot take any people, of any color, and exempt them from the requirements of civilization — including work, behavioral standards, personal responsibility, and all the other basic things that the clever intelligentsia disdain — without ruinous consequences to them and to society at large.

Non-judgmental subsidies of counterproductive lifestyles are treating people as if they were livestock, to be fed and tended by others in a welfare state — and yet expecting them to develop as human beings have developed when facing the challenges of life themselves.

One key fact that keeps getting ignored is that the poverty rate among black married couples has been in single digits every year since 1994. Behavior matters and facts matter, more than the prevailing social visions or political empires built on those visions.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results:

[Regarding] the attack in Texas, we’re learning more about the gunmen who opened fire at an event where an anti-Islamic group held a contest on who could be the nastiest – draw the lastiest [sic] the nastiest cartoon of Mohamed. Do you believe that people set that kind of a mousetrap?

…I remember the old days when the Nazi Party and the Communist Party would sort of team up in a weird, sick, symbiotic way. One would have an event, and the other would attack it, you know? Well, I think she caused this trouble, and whether this trouble came yesterday, or it came two weeks from now, it’s going to be in the air as long as you taunt.

—”Chris Matthews: Pamela Geller CAUSED Texas shooting by setting a TRAP for Muslims, compares to Nazis,” transcription of video at The Right Scoop, tonight.

There is a history of retaliation for perceived slights to Islam. Back in 1989, a fatwa, or death sentence, was issued for Salman Rushdie because his book Satanic Verses was considered offensive to Islam. In 2004, we all know this story, dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh was murdered on the street by a killer who considered van Gogh’s work anti-Islamic. In 2005, when a Dutch newspaper published cartoons lampooning Muhammad, the artists and publishers were met with death threats.

I want your view because you’re so optimistic on this. What do you make of what happened today? Do you think it is an odd occurrence? Or is this the start of something that we’re going to have to live with for decades? Where people — this whole thing being disaffected. Tough luck you’re disaffected. You’re living in France. The country is called France. It’s French. Liberty, equality, fraternity. Get with it. If you don’t like living there, move! This idea that somehow France has to adjust to your thinking about what constitutes blasphemy is outrageous.

—”Chris Matthews: This Idea That France Has To Adjust To Your Thinking Is Outrageous,” Real Clear Politics (with video), January 7, 2015.

Related: “Charlie Hebdo editor warns western media: ‘We can’t be the only ones to stand up for these values.’”

Because that’s what the DNC-MSM is currently attempting to do now, as the JournoList-style narrative gets cemented down. But as Jonathan S. Tobin writes at Commentary:

The editors of Charlie Hebdo, Wilders and Geller need to be defended not because they are right about everything they say, write or draw. They aren’t right about everything as is inevitable with anyone who ignores nuances and seeks to inflame rather than analyze and illuminate. But, contrary to many of the talking heads on television today, they aren’t the problem. The problem is that a variant of Islam that commands the loyalty of hundreds of millions around the globe thinks it is okay to kill those who blaspheme against Islam. It is that faith that leads terrorists to cut off the heads of non-believers and to wage a war of conquest across the Middle East that threatens the security of the region and the United States. Nor is it a coincidence that this same not insignificant splinter of Islam is also promoting vicious anti-Semitism and helped fuel a rising tide of Jew hatred across Europe.

So, just as it is offensive to speak of the slain editors of Charlie Hebdo as being unworthy of our defense because of their harsh views, it is just as inadmissible for today’s discussion to center on whether or not Wilders or Geller are too provocative or show bad taste in their attacks on Islam. That may be hard for some in the Muslim world to accept. It may also be equally hard for many on the left, both here and in Europe, who have wrongly come to accept the idea that Islam may not be offended because it is a victim of imperialism and the West or the Jews who must always be seen as the villain. But the struggle against intolerant Islamism is one that hinges on the right and even the necessity to make it clear to the world that Muslims must learn to tolerate other views of their faith. Free speech can’t be sacrificed to Islamist sensibilities. Until it is safe for Wilders and Geller to speak without massive security measures, let us hear no more about the evils of Islamophobia.

The “I support freedom of speech but…” approach is a curious one for the media to take, especially since:

But then, as Charles C.W. Cooke writes at NRO, “the Bill of Rights Would Never Pass Today.” And as we’ve seen since early 2009 when the Tea Party initially emerged, the media are very angry that “the wrong people” have the right to free speech. They have been for many years, but today gave them the opportunity to really drop the mask. The rest of us should be glad the media aren’t disguising their hatred of the First Amendment today, and very worried about what they’ll do next to weaken or eliminate it.

Update: Andy McCarthy writes, “it will not do to blame the messenger for the violence:”

The shooting last night was not caused by the free-speech event any more than the Charlie Hebdo murders were caused by derogatory caricatures, or the rioting after a Danish newspaper’s publication of anti-Islam cartoons was caused by the newspaper. The violence is caused by Islamic supremacist ideology and its law that incites Muslims to kill those they judge to have disparaged Islam.

Christians were offended by Piss Christ, but they did not respond by killing the “artist” or blowing up the exhibiting museum. If any had, they would have been universally condemned for both violating society’s laws and betraying Christian tenets. In such a case, we would have blamed the killers, not the provocative art. There can be no right against being provoked in a free society; we rely on the vigorous exchange of ideas to arrive at sensible policy. And the greater the threat to liberty, the more necessary it is to provoke.

As McCarthy writes, “You may not like the provocateurs’ methods. Personally, I am not a fan of gratuitous insult, which can antagonize pro-Western Muslims we want on our side. But let’s not make too much of that. Muslims who really are pro-Western already know, as Americans overwhelmingly know, that being offended is a small price to pay to live in a free society. We can bristle at an offense and still grasp that we do not want the offense criminalized.”

Meanwhile, the Daily Beast’s Dean Obeidallah condemns Geller in the form of defending her “Right to Hate.” I’m sure he’s equally incensed by this earlier mockery of religion — as Photoshopped by the Daily Beast.

CNN: The Bitch was Begging For It

May 4th, 2015 - 1:25 pm

“CNN’s attacks on Geller all day Monday can be summed up in just a few words: ‘The Bitch was begging for it,’” John Nolte writes at Big Journalism:

The victim-blamers at CNN are furious at Geller. First off, she’s an outspoken conservative. Secondly, this terror attack against her stepped all over CNN’s desire to re-ignite the riots in Baltimore. Now CNN has to change the topic to stories anathema to CNN’s Leftist/anarchists: Muslim as terrorists; heroic cops (in Texas, no less), and a conservative survivor/victim.

CNN’s fury against Geller started first thing morning at the hands of “New Day” co-anchor Alisyn Camerota. Forget all the good memories you have of Camerota at Fox News. She went the full-CNN against Geller, attacking the activist as a bigot who is unnecessarily provocative. Camerota’s victim-blaming was disgraceful, and Geller ran circles around her.

Would Camerota ask a rape victim if her clothes were too provocative? Of course not. But Camerota insisted the Geller’s speech-skirt was too low, that she provoked her attackers.

Not to be outdone, hideous mean girl Carol Costello grabbed the anchor baton from Camerota and brought on guest after guest to repeat CNN’s belief that Geller was begging for it.

First,  Costello brought on black-baby-mocker Dean Obeidallah, who attacked Geller for five full minutes with no specifics, only ad hominem attacks. Then a guest from the far-left Senior Poverty Law Center (SPLC) was brought on for another free-wheeling five minutes of ad hominem attacks against Geller.

Not once did Costello challenge her guests or demand specifics. Maybe she was too busy reliving the glory days of the assault on Bristol Palin.

The baton was then passed to CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield, who dug up yet-another hater from the SPLC to repeat the same ad hominem against Geller. Not once did Banfield challenge her guest or demand specifics.

Nolte isn’t done — and likely the new puritans at Time-Warner-CNN-HBO aren’t either, given their long hatred of the right and their long de facto support of Islam.

Allahpundit-esque Exit Question: How many women in the DNC-MSM attacking Geller today for being too provocative in her tone and style have a “Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History” bumper sticker attached to their Volvos and Priuses?

Related: From Katie Pavlich at Townhall: “CAIR: We Condemn The Terror Attack In Texas, But Pamela Geller Totally Had It Coming.”

‘In Texas, We Shoot Back’

May 4th, 2015 - 1:05 pm

“Elton Simpson was the first figure identified in the latest eruption from the Religion of Peace™ — an attempted massacre at an exhibition of anti-Islamist cartoons in suburban Garland, Texas, which ended in the shooting of Simpson and his coconspirator, because Texas is where terrorists go to get out-gunned at an art show,” Kevin D. Williamson writes at NRO today. “Simpson and his pal are as dead as a tuna casserole — in Texas, we shoot back:”

We got lucky when luck wasn’t what we needed.

Simpson was, like the overwhelming majority of murderers and most of those who commit serious violent crimes, already known to the authorities. He had been investigated by the FBI on the suspicion that he was attempting to travel to Somalia to engage in jihad. He was convicted of lying to the FBI in that episode, and sentenced to . . . probation. The average sentence for a tax-related crime in these United States is 31 months in a federal penitentiary, but for attempting to join up with a gang of savages who are merrily beheading, torturing, enslaving, and raping their way around the world? Probation, and damned little subsequent oversight, apparently.

* * * * * * * *

We got lucky in Garland, but we needn’t — mustn’t — rely on luck. (As the IRA told Margaret Thatcher after its failed attempt to assassinate her: “We only have to be lucky once. You will have to be lucky always.”) We have professionals for this sort of thing. Yes, it is tons of work to keep an eye on sundry peripatetic villains, and yes, in many cases that laborious effort will produce nothing that is going to earn any fed or local cop a plaque on his wall or a commendation. But we give these police agencies princely budgets and resplendently compensated managers, along with remarkable investigatory powers and other generous resources, to do that job.

So do the damned job.

Federal authorities weren’t doing their job on 9/11. They weren’t doing their job before the attack in Garland, either. No, nobody can stop every crime or detect every criminal, much less every jihadist. But this one had a great big flashing neon sign over his head reading “terrorist.”

If nobody saw, nobody was looking.

Read the whole thing. And if you’d like to see Kevin D. Williamson discussing the first and second Amendment and Texas while in Texas, sign up for our Bullets and Bourbons event in December, where Kevin will be speaking with my PJM colleagues Glenn Reynolds, Roger L. Simon, Steve Green and Dr. Helen, and Ed Morrissey, Dana Loesch, and Mark Rippetoe.

Related: Regarding Elton “Lone Wolf” Simpson, here’s your official Lenny & Squiggy Trigger Warning from Australia’s Tim Blair.

How Will Mad Men End?

May 4th, 2015 - 11:13 am

After its initial PR splash for its first season on AMC in 2007, the audience for Mad Men these days is a bit like the audience for the Velvet Underground. As Brian Eno was quoted as saying in the early 1980s, while the Velvets’ first album only sold 30,000 copies, everybody who bought one started his own rock group. (Guilty as charged.) Based on its ratings, it seems like Mad Men only has about 30,000 viewers left — and the ones who are left are blogging about it and on Twitter. (Again, guilty as charged. Thanks for indulging this post.)

With two episodes left, how will the series end? Its cryptic last scene in yesterday’s episode offers all sorts of possibilities to be resolved in the final two weeks. Don drives his sharp mid-’60s Cadillac through what looked like the highway that divides the cornfield with the murderous crop-duster in North By Northwest (with Cary Grant as the prototype for both James Bond and Don Draper). He picks up a hitchhiker who looks a cross between late period Jim Morrison, Charles Manson, and maybe a touch of the symbolic Indian in Oliver Stone’s weird biopic of the Doors. Filthy hippie gets in and the two drive off — to the music of David Bowie’s epochal “Space Oddity.” Does Don get mugged? Fall asleep and crash the car? Steal the filthy hippie’s identity and proceed to spend the rest of his days walking the earth like Samuel L. Jackson at the end of Kung Fu? (I may be mixing up my pop culture metaphors on that last one.)

Or does he go off to head up McCann’s new office in St. Paul? Tune in again next Sunday, Same Don-Time, same Don-Channel.

If you’re still watching as well, what’s your take on how the series ends? Let me know in the comments below.

Fresh off her assault by Muslim terrorists last night, Geller gets assaulted by Time-Warner-CNN-HBO spokeswoman Alisyn Camerota, who as John Nolte of Big Journalism writes is “victim-blaming her.” in the above clip. In 2012, this was a network that defended Trayvon Martin after he tried to cave in the skull of George Zimmerman, and Michael Brown after he robbed a convenience store and attempted to steal a policeman’s gun and use it against him. But someone actually employing her legal First Amendment rights is smelling salts time for the network, which speaks volumes about its worldview. Or as Nolte tweets, CNN must ALWAYS have a right-wing villain. So even though she was targeted for murder, CNN is demonizing Pam Geller.”

Ant not just that left-wing network; as Noah Rothman writes at Hot Air, Camerota is far from alone, both at CNN and the DNC-MSM at large, that Geller and her panel had it coming: Rothman rounds up quotes from CNN’s Marc Lamont Hill, the New York Times’ Rukmini Callimachi, and the London Daily Mail, which ran a piece last night headlined “The woman behind anti-Islamic Muhammad cartoon contest and her long history of hatred.” As Rothman writes:

One of Charlie Hebdo’s surviving cartoonist, an artist who goes by the moniker Lulz, revealed last week that he would no longer draw the images of Mohamed that got so many of his friends killed. The assassin’s veto is upheld. For the AP and others, another murderer’s claim apparently deserves a fair hearing. If only Geller hadn’t worn that short skirt…

Meanwhile on Twitter, Iowahawk spots further examples of what Salman Rushdie calls “the But Brigade”employing similar arguments that Islam gets its heckler’s veto against free speech.

At the Federalist, Robert Tracinski offers a useful tip for speed-reading the But Brigade today: “Everything before the ‘but’ is BS.”

Currently being updated by Brandon Darby of Breitbart Texas:

Police have the area blocked off and have removed reporters for up to half a mile away. Helicopters are patrolling the skies and police are standing in the intersection, blocking the roads and are armed with M-16s.

UPDATE, 8:51 PM: A senior officer has said that the officer taken to the hospital will be OK, and that the two suspects will not be OK. The 100 people being held inside singing the Star-Spangled Banner to comfort themselves.

UPDATE, 8:45 PM: Police appeared to have escorted a few individuals through a conference room, and continue to patrol the perimeter.

UPDATE: Suspects had two AK-47’s according to police on the scene. The officer has been transported to the hospital. The suspects are still on the ground at the scene. They are not moving and are not being touched at this time until a bomb squad checks out their bodies.

Approximately 100 people are being held by police in a secured facility inside the event.

The incident occurred in Garland, a suburb of Dallas; Darby notes that “Armed police officers rushed in to the Mohammed Art Exhibit and Contest and quickly removed Pamela Geller and whisked her away to safety after a gunfight erupted outside of the event.” More as it comes in.

Some related tweets:

 

 

And the Dallas Morning News begins the MSM spin that the victims had it coming:

 


Update: Jocelyn Lockwood, a reporter with the Dallas NBC affiliate, is live tweeting the aftermath of the incident. She notes that “two men pulled up got out of a vehicle and started shooting,” resulting in an officer being hospitalized after he was shot, and the nearby Walmart being evacuated as a precaution while “Garland PD setting up perimeter around vehicle near event, planning to search it.”

Plus at least one report of “Possible third suspect reportedly in Walmart with grenade.”

Meanwhile, Twitchy notes, “Tweeters bring the hate after shooting at Muhammad art contest in Texas,” and those praising the attack:

While Fox has live coverage, as of 7:14 PM PDT, apparently CNN is still working out the angle on the narrative and/or doesn’t want to break into its pro-pot documentary with actual breaking news:

At Breitbart Texas, Brandon Darby updates his post; he speculates “the shooting was timed for the end of the conference so that the gunmen could target the crowd flooding out into the parking lot. The event went longer than expected, which potentially prevented further casualties. The event was initially scheduled to end at 7 PM.” And from Daniel Greenfield at David Horowitz’s FrontPage Website, “Muslims Praise Texas Mohammed Cartoon Attack, Claim Responsibility.” In video at Ezra Levant’s The Rebel Website, “David Menzies reports from terror attack on Garland, Texas ‘Mohammed cartoon’ event.” The New York Times goes for “the victims shouldn’t dress and/or talk so proactively” route…


…Which is a curious approach to take for a paper that hired Piss Christ “Artist” Andres Serrano to illustrate one of its daily rants on Abu Ghraib back in 2005.

Late Update:

 

George Orwell will be spinning in his grave like a dreidel tomorrow, as the DNC-MSM ransacks their thesauruses to find new and unique ways to all say variations on “I believe in free speech, but…”

“UN scientists warn time is running out to tackle global warming — Scientists say eight years left to avoid worst effects,” screamed a London Guardian headline on May 4th, 2007. The article’s lede is equally classic boilerplate “Grauniad:”

Governments are running out of time to address climate change and to avoid the worst effects of rising temperatures, an influential UN panel warned yesterday.

Greater energy efficiency, renewable electricity sources and new technology to dump carbon dioxide underground can all help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the experts said. But there could be as little as eight years left to avoid a dangerous global average rise of 2C or more.

The warning came in a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published yesterday in Bangkok. It says most of the technology needed to stop climate change in its tracks already exists, but that governments must act quickly to force through changes across all sectors of society. Delays will make the problem more difficult, and more expensive.

As Power Line’s Steve Hayward quips, “Those eight years run out tomorrow.  So I assume that climatistas will shut up tomorrow night.”

Oh, of course — just like they did after being embarrassed by NASA’s James Hansen claiming in January of 2009 that Obama had only four years to save the planet,  Al Gore declaring in December of 2008 that “the entire North ‘polarized’ cap will disappear in 5 years,” (and Gore later selling out to Big Oil) and the classic March 2000 headline from the London Independent quoted above.

Those of us who grew up in the 1970s recall an era when the media was awash in doomsday, paranormal crankery and conspiracy theories — Bigfoot, looming global cooling, mass starvation and lurking UFOs. Regarding that last example from the fever swamps, a decade ago at Tech Central Station,Internet Killed the Alien Star,” Douglas Kern wrote:

Yet in recent years, interest in the UFO phenomenon has withered. Oh, the websites are still up, the odd UFO picture is still taken, and the usual hardcore UFO advocates make the same tired arguments about the same tired cases, but the thrill is gone. What happened? Why did the saucers crash?

The Internet showed this particular emperor to be lacking in clothes. If UFOs and alien visitations were genuine, tangible, objective realities, the Internet would be an unstoppable force for detecting them. How long could the vast government conspiracy last, when intrepid UFO investigators could post their prized pictures on the Internet seconds after taking them? How could the Men in Black shut down every website devoted to scans of secret government UFO documents? How could marauding alien kidnappers remain hidden in a nation with millions of webcams?

Just as our technology for finding and understanding UFOs improved dramatically, the manifestations of UFOs dwindled away. Despite forty-plus years of alleged alien abductions, not one scrap of physical evidence supports the claim that mysterious visitors are conducting unholy experiments on hapless victims. The technology for sophisticated photograph analysis can be found in every PC in America, and yet, oddly, recent UFO pictures are rare. Cell phones and instant messaging could summon throngs of people to witness a paranormal event, and yet such paranormal events don’t seem to happen very often these days. For an allegedly real phenomenon, UFOs sure do a good job of acting like the imaginary friend of the true believers. How strange, that they should disappear just as we develop the ability to see them clearly. Or perhaps it isn’t so strange.

The Internet taught the public many tricks of the UFO trade. For years, hucksters and mental cases played upon the credulity of UFO investigators. Bad science, shabby investigation, and dubious tales from unlikely witnesses characterized far too many UFO cases. But the rise of the Internet taught the world to be more skeptical of unverified information — and careful skepticism is the bane of the UFO phenomenon. It took UFO experts over a decade to determine that the “Majestic-12″ documents of the eighties were a hoax, rather than actual government documents proving the reality of UFOs. Contrast that decade to the mere days in which the blogosphere disproved the Mary Mapes Memogate documents. Similarly, in the nineties, UFO enthusiasts were stunned when they learned that a leading investigator of the Roswell incident had fabricated much of his research, as well as his credentials. Today, a Google search and a few e-mails would expose such shenanigans in minutes.

Global cooling / warming / climate change / climate chaos was kept alive by old media from the first Earth Day in 1970 (which really taught the value of composting…) until the rise of the World Wide Web in the 1990s. Any scientist seeking plentiful government funding and/or any politician wishing to reduce his constituents’ freedoms could appear on the nightly news and mutter, all but wearing a sandwich board that “we only have five years/ten years/eight years” to save the earth, and no sympathetic media figure would ever refute such a statement with earlier expired final countdowns — perhaps the scientist or politician’s own. Today, as with UFOs and Nessie, it’s far easier to illustrate a multitude of failed predictions of doomsday. Speaking of which, for our (by no means complete) collection of some of the previous not-so-final countdowns from the eco-crank left, start here and keep scrolling.

Related: My colleague Bill Whittle dubs it all “Loch Ness Socialism:”

So, Al Sharpton walks up to a microphone in Baltimore and the following words somehow arranged themselves and emerged from his mouth:

Sharpton said, “we need the Justice Department to step in and take over policing in this country. In the 20th century, they had to fight states’ rights in — to get the right to vote. We’re going to have to fight states’ rights in terms of closing down police cases.”

Insert a Taranto-esque “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA” (or simply “eff off,” if you prefer) here in response to the man who made the words Tawana Brawley and Freddie’s Fashion Mart household names. Meanwhile, Glenn Reynolds explains to USA Today readers why this is a staggeringly bad idea. As the Insta-Professor writes, “Want a lawless police force? Federalize it:”

The third problem with unifying police authority under a national umbrella is that it’s much more prone to political abuse by the party in power. As we’ve seen with the IRS — which, interestingly, shows little interest in frequent White House visitor Al Sharpton’s unpaid taxes — federal bureaucrats are all too willing to serve the interests of their political masters even when doing so violates the law. Putting most law enforcement in the hands of diverse state and local authorities helps limit the potential for abuse. Putting everything under federal control, on the other hand, magnifies it.

Instead, if we’re really serious about increasing law enforcement accountability, we should end civil service protections for federal employees, while outlawing public employee unions. We should also abolish governmental immunity for federal, state, and local employees, forcing them to face civil lawsuits for illegal behavior, just as the rest of us must do.

Instead of centralizing law enforcement, we should promote decentralization, and accountability. Accountability is a good thing. Sharpton should try it some time.

By the way, remember the good old days when the left hated and demonized Republican attorney generals such as John Mitchell, Ed Meese and John Ashcroft, and looked the other way while their predecessor Robert F. Kennedy wiretapped Martin Luther King? Good times, good times. Now Sharpton wants to give the attorney general even more power — forgetting that it’s all fun and games for the left until the president has an (R) after his name.

 Related: “The NY Times: A Study In Fakery.”