September 2, 2012
SEX, MONEY AND POLITICS: Something Rotten In New York.
SEX, MONEY AND POLITICS: Something Rotten In New York.
BARACK OBAMA’S DEFINITION OF SIN: “Being out of alignment with my values.”
THE PARTY OF TED KENNEDY . . . PARTIES LIKE TED KENNEDY! Calif Delegates relax at Blake Hotel. But two of their delegation showed up so drunk hotel called paramedics. But without Ted Kennedy’s liver. Kids, don’t try that at home. You’re not professionals.
TIMOTHY DALRYMPLE: Barack Obama, The Empty Stool. “President Obama has consistently been absent, more concerned about branding than leadership, with image and atmospherics than truly rallying the troops and harnessing our resources and solving our most pressing problems. He turned over the task of crafting solutions on the stimulus bill and the health care bill to Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, who predictably butchered it. He botched the budget compromise with John Boehner and withdrew from the process. When he thought that partisan gridlock in Congress might make him look bad, rather than forging into the gridlock and navigating a way forward he withdrew to the White House and played over 100 rounds of golf. The problem for President Obama is that the soaring oratory will not work this time. The contrast between the rhetoric and his actual achievements is too great.”
SULTAN KNISH: Everything Is Fake Now.
REAL DJ AT WORK: So I mentioned earlier that blogging is kinda like DJing. But here’s a real DJ — Angina P, an online friend from the old MP3.com days, over a decade ago now — performing at Forms of Hands in 2011. And here’s another cool video where you can see her working. She’s come a long way.
Here’s her website.
FORGET LABOR DAY — how about celebrating Creators’ Day? “It is long past time to celebrate the people who necessarily come first in the economic process, the people who create the jobs, the people who sign the paychecks, the people who risks their effort and time and capital, the people whose ideas and drive and commitment make the paychecks possible. Without risk-takers, innovators, creators, adventurers, entrepreneurs — no jobs, no wages, no salaries, no employees, no workers, no labor, no nothin’.”
CLARICE FELDMAN: Media Madness, And The Reckoning. “Besides being pathological, the media approach is clearly coordinated, and understandably so given the incestuous relationships between so many in the media and the Democratic party.”
AN EASY-TO-BUILD long-range water balloon launcher.
NUCLEAR WEAPONS PLANT SECURITY: Not Even Close Enough For Government Work. “The intruders used ordinary bolt cutters to penetrate as far as the uranium storage building before dawn on July 28, and then went undiscovered until they approached an officer in his vehicle and surrendered.” Troubling displays of ineptitude, indeed. But then, there’s a lot of that going around these days.
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#WARONMEN: Amid Spreading Sexual Harassment Scandal at Homeland Security Dep’t, ICE Chief Resigns. “The Department of Justice is trying to get the lawsuit squelched on the basis that there was no claim of retaliation. One thing is sure, the Obama administration would like this matter to go away and not bother them until after the election.” The other thing that’s sure is that it won’t get the kind of media coverage it would get in a Republican administration with an election two months away.
GOTCHER WHITE HOUSE BEER RECIPES RIGHT HERE. I haven’t whipped up a batch of homebrew in ages. I should probably start again.
MISSING IN ACTION: Female Superheroes. Well, after Helen Slater as Supergirl, where else is there to go?
CRIME: Maple Syrup Heist Leaves Quebec In A Sticky Mess. “The puzzle is how the culprits managed to siphon off almost C$30 million ($30.4 million) of syrup. That’s the equivalent of 10 million pounds or roughly 15,000 barrels of syrup. And the stock didn’t vanish somewhere in the supply chain of a major city. It’s missing from a warehouse in Saint-Louis-de-Blandford, a tiny town of 903 people, according to the 2011 Census. They’re usually more focused on cranberries, whether it’s harvesting them or celebrating them in cranberry festivals. So imagine the surprise when a “routine inventory check,” as the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers (FPAQ) calls it, revealed evidence of a massive heist. Row after row of barrels were empty, filled with nothing but sweet-smelling Quebec air.”
FROM HOMELESSNESS to the Paralympics.
MONDAY: NATIONAL EMPTY CHAIR DAY.
IN THE MAIL: Living Economics: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.
NEWS YOU CAN USE: Reason TV: What We Saw At The “Go Topless” Protest. But the Reason TV folks chickened out.
WATCH HIM WRIGGLE, WATCH HIM SQUIRM: Axelrod ducks, weaves, but won’t say whether Americans are better off than they were four years ago.
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Why Nothing Is Shovel-Ready Anymore: A Worst-Practices Seminar.
RASMUSSEN: Romney 48, Obama 44. “Just prior to this past week’s Republican National Convention, Romney trailed the president by two. Today’s four-point advantage confirms that the GOP hopeful has received the expected convention bounce.”
WASHINGTON POST: Obama Did Not Change Washington. Ya think?
NEWS YOU CAN USE: How Rich People Think Differently.
MY SUNDAY WASHINGTON EXAMINER COLUMN: Politics And The Importance of Showing Up.
YOU KNOW THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ABOUT COMEDY? TIMING. Party Crasher!… US Debt Expected to Top $16 Trillion During DNC Convention.
DAN RIEHL: Unpopularity contest: How Obama campaigned on your tax dollars this weekend. “The threshold to release Obama’s beer recipe was 25,000 signatures … and they couldn’t even meet that. But they wanted the casual image of a beer drinking Obama out there for the Labor Day weekend … while New Orleans remains underwater, by the way. Heckuva job, Barry. Heckuva job. Now, about those college transcripts ….heh.”
I LIKE THAT: “The intellectual DJ of the blogosphere.”
Link-style blogging is like DJing. Somebody else once compared me to the Judge Jules of the blogosphere, and I think that’s right. You’ve got your hipper, edgier bloggers, like Treacher or Goldstein, but my role is to introduce them to the masses. But don’t expect me to quit blogging to practice law.
A LARGELY UNADDRESSED QUESTION: What would Obama do with another four years?
Democrats convened in Charlotte, NC, will double down on their claim that Bain Capital is really the Bain crime family. They will accuse Republican nominee Mitt Romney and Bain’s other “greedy” co-founders of stealing their winnings, evading taxes and lighting cigars with $100 bills on their yachts.
But Bain’s private-equity executives have enriched dozens of organizations and millions of individuals in the Democratic base — including some who scream most loudly for President Obama’s re-election.
Government-worker pension funds are the chief beneficiaries of Bain’s economic stewardship. New York-based Preqin uses public documents, news accounts and Freedom of Information requests to track private-equity holdings. Since 2000, Preqin reports, the following funds have entrusted some $1.56 billion to Bain:
* Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund ($2.2 million)
* Indiana Public Retirement System ($39.3 million)
* Iowa Public Employees’ Retirement System ($177.1 million)
* The Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension System ($19.5 million)
* Maryland State Retirement and Pension System ($117.5 million)
* Public Employees’ Retirement System of Nevada ($20.3 million)
* State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio ($767.3 million)
* Pennsylvania State Employees’ Retirement System ($231.5 million)
* Employees’ Retirement System of Rhode Island ($25 million)
* San Diego County Employees Retirement Association ($23.5 million)
* Teacher Retirement System of Texas ($122.5 million)
* Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System ($15 million)
But wait, there’s more!
According to BuyOuts magazine and S&P Capital IQ, Bain’s other college clients have included Cornell, Emory, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Notre Dame and the University of Pittsburgh. Preqin reports that the following schools have placed at least $424.6 million with Bain Capital between 1998 and 2008:
* Purdue University ($15.9 million)
* University of California ($225.7 million)
* University of Michigan ($130 million)
* University of Virginia ($20 million)
* University of Washington ($33 million)
Major, center-left foundations and cultural establishments also have seen their prospects brighten, thanks to Bain Capital. According to the aforementioned sources, such Bain clients have included the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the Doris Duke Foundation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Ford Foundation, the Heinz Endowments and the Oprah Winfrey Foundation.
Republicans should challenge these lefty groups to divest, or shut up.
ANN ALTHOUSE: David Brooks Really Blew It On This One. “It’s embarrassing.”
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: California Higher Education’s Hollow Core.
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JEFF GOLDSTEIN: GOP convention viewership down more than 40%. Mark Levin asks, why? What does it augur? Goldstein answers. Conclusion: “Well, I don’t think the power structure has any idea what’s coming.”
UPDATE: Reader Lin Wicklund writes: “As far as I can tell, nobody bothered to measure C-SPAN’s viewership. I don’t like to miss part of the coverage while heads blather at me to tell what I should think about the parts that they decide I should watch. C-Span suits me to a T!”
Good point. That’s what I watched.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Allen Covert writes: “I dvr’d cspan then watched what I wanted without the pundits. That’s why I got to see Mia Love speak. If I was watching a network I would have not seen her.”
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD GETS RID OF COMMENTS ON HIS BLOG: “To make the comments section work in its present form we would have to edit and curate much more aggressively than we do now and in our current judgment the effort needed to do that is better spent improving other features of the blog.”
I toy with the idea of opening comments now and then, but the above has always been my feeling, too.
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PEJMAN YOUSEFZADEH: Barack Obama, 2012: “Please Give Me A Mulligan!”
METAPHOR ALERT: Rains wash away Mount Obama in Charlotte, N.C. “A torrential downpour that struck Charlotte Saturday afternoon damaged the Mount Rushmore-style sand sculpture bust of President Obama — an ominous beginning to what many fear is a plagued convention.”
A house built on sand. . . .
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PROF. JACOBSON: They’re Still Just JournoLists. “To borrow their favorite metaphor, it was as if someone blew a dog whistle that only the liberal media could hear.” Dog whistle, emailed marching orders, whatever.
POINTS AND FIGURES: Why QE3? Because Bernanke Says 25 Million Unemployed is a Tragedy. Ben Bernanke channeling Clint Eastwood? Why not? But there’s only one problem: “There is no benefit to quantitative ease except you feel richer than you really are. When looking at the costs, the Fed also needs to total up all the damage that it has wreaked on retirees that are living on a fixed income. Most of them have investments tied to an interest rate instrument and have been devastated by Fed action over the past several years. The other people that are hurt are savers. People sitting on cash in checking and savings accounts. Their cash suddenly got worth less than it was yesterday.”
Yeah, somebody was talking about that the other day.
Bottom line: “The Fed is out of bullets. The only thing that can stimulate this economy is a change in fiscal policy.” But where are we going to get that?
CAVEAT, ER, WELL . . . Vaginal rejuvenation claims misleading patients.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: Moore’s Law vs. The Law of More.
ANOTHER REASON TO BE HARDENING INFRASTRUCTURE: Solar storms can destabilize power grids at midlatitudes. “The Sun is capable of disrupting electrical systems on Earth in a variety of ways, from solar flares and coronal mass ejections to proton storms. Typically, it is only objects far above the Earth’s surface, or systems at high altitudes at polar latitudes, that are considered at risk except during the most powerful storms. Notable recent examples include solar activity during March 1989 and October 2003 (the ‘Halloween Storms’), which knocked out power in Quebec, Canada, and Sweden, respectively. Research by Marshall et al., however, finds that even a moderate event can have destructive effects far from the typical regions of concern.”
80% OF LIFE IS SHOWING UP. And more like 100% of politics. So who’s showing up? Here’s a pic from reader Charles Browning, who’s waiting for the Romney/Ryan event in Jacksonville. He emails: “2+ hours until 4:30 arrival. This crowd is awesome already.”
UPDATE: Browning sends another pic.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Jon Ekdahl sends this pic from the rally, now getting underway.
Plus: “Insanely packed!”
THE AIRCRAFT AND SPACECRAFT of Neil Armstrong’s career.
GETCHER ROMNEY-RYAN MAGNETIC BUMPER STICKERS right here!
BOY FINDS A BONANZA IN WHALE VOMIT. “An 8-year-old boy in England could be up to $63,000 richer, thanks to a piece of solidified whale vomit he picked up on the beach. The chunk may look like a yellow-brownish rock, but it’s actually a primo piece of ambergris, an expensive perfume ingredient that is, um, spewed out by whales.”
I’M NOT A FAN: Why are there so many new tick-borne diseases? “Improvements in medical technology, mostly. The newly discovered tick-borne diseases have probably been infecting humans for years, but they’re not easy to spot. Many victims never realize a tick has bitten them, and the symptoms, such as fevers, aches, and fatigue, are not distinctive and mirror those of common summer viral infections. The patient’s immune system usually fights off the illness unassisted, so doctors don’t bother running the battery of tests required to identify a new pathogen. Only in the rare cases when a patient struggles with the infection are physicians likely to make a genuine discovery. (The disease identified this week, a member of the phlebovirus family, hospitalized two men in Missouri.) They order blood smears or antibody tests to identify the presence of a pathogen, and genetic analyses—which were either inefficient or completely unavailable to doctors just a few years ago—alert researchers to the presence of the previously unidentified bug. Researchers have also become more aggressive recently, with some searching within ticks themselves for evidence of new pathogens. Lyme disease is a classic example of how long a disease can exist in a population without being identified.”
BOB ZUBRIN: The Green War On The Poor. “A ton of carbon dioxide contains 248 kilograms of carbon, so a tax of $300 per ton of CO2 would be equivalent to taxing carbon at a rate of $1.21 per kg. Since there are about 2.5 kg of carbon in a gallon of gasoline, this would increase the cost of a gallon of gas by $3.02 per gallon, or just a little more than Frank says. The average American driver uses about 730 gallons of gasoline per year, so this tax would represent a cost of about $2,200 per driver. This would be a serious hit for the average American worker, whose before-tax income is about $45,000 per year, and devastating to those making less than this. But let us consider the effects on the economy as a whole.”
BUT IT’LL GET LESS ATTENTION THAN TODD AKIN: Former Dem. Hill Staffer and Obama Admin. Official Accused of Drugging and Sexually Assaulting Women. #WaronWomen.
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Russian Repression Radicalizes The Caucasus.
ROLL CALL: Mitt Romney’s Congressional Allies Gear Up for First 100 Days. “Congressional allies close to Mitt Romney are already looking ahead to a GOP takeover next year and are trying to set the stage for a burst of post-inauguration activity, lawmakers, aides and GOP strategists told Roll Call this week. Romney and his running mate Rep. Paul Ryan have close ties to key Republicans in both chambers who will be instrumental in pushing the former Massachusetts governor’s agenda to his desk and help him hit the ground running.”
J. CHRISTIAN ADAMS: The GOP Goes Alinsky On Obama.
THE HILL: Ethics panel extends probe of Rep. Andrews. “The House Ethics Committee on Friday announced it has extended its investigation into Rep. Rob Andrews over allegations that the New Jersey Democrat misused campaign funds to take private family trips. The secretive panel also released a lengthy report from the Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) detailing the allegations, including charges that Andrews tapped tens-of-thousands of dollars in campaign funds to cover a 2011 trip to a wedding in Scotland, as well as multiple visits the same year to Los Angeles with his daughters.”
Remember when Nancy Pelosi was going on about a “culture of corruption,” and promising to “drain the swamp?” Yeah, me neither.
RASMUSSEN: Romney 47, Obama 44.
LOOK UPON MY WORKS, YE MIGHTY, and have a good laugh.
FRED SIEGEL: The Middle Class And Its Enemies.
MORE ODD HAPPENINGS INVOLVING THE MILWAUKEE POLICE DEPARTMENT:
Some people who beat a ticket in Milwaukee Municipal Court might do a little victory dance.
Geoff Davidian appealed.
Davidian wanted his day in court to explore what he contends was a mishandling of a traffic accident involving a police officer and Davidian’s attempts to report it. He wanted a trial, where the police officer would have to testify. Instead, a judge dismissed the case.
“What am I trying to accomplish?” Davidian said. “To have cops not stop a reporter with a camera, and to make this judge think before he does that kind of thing again.”
It all started more than a year ago when Davidian was ticketed for resisting or obstructing, after he tried to videotape the arrest of a woman he says was wrongly struck by a Milwaukee police cruiser exiting an alley.
Unsuccessful in having the case reactivated, Davidian returned to Municipal Court last week with fliers about his experience, warning others headed inside to not let themselves be rushed or bullied.
Davidian says he discovered a whole lot of things he didn’t like about the court during his foray through the system. He says Judge Phillip Chavez refused to allow him to record his own proceeding, wouldn’t allow Davidian’s chosen counsel to appear on his behalf, and didn’t notify him when he denied Davidian’s appeal.
His biggest surprise, he said, was having a substitute judge who’s not even a lawyer appear one day to dismiss the case, while ordering no record be made.
That town really doesn’t seem to care much for the rule of law.
AD AGE REPORTS: NEWSWEEK’S “HIT THE ROAD, BARACK” COVER a huge hit on newsstands.
ROGER SIMON: David Brooks’ Odd Blindness. “Hello, where were you, David? On Thursday evening, one after the other private citizen came forth to testify to Mitt Romney’s extraordinary personal charity and deep community spirit. I have never seen anything like it at a convention, Republican or Democrat. I don’t know if you would call it Burkean, but you would certainly call it eminently decent and highly laudable. The culmination was Ted and Pat Oparowsky of New Hampshire who recounted how much time and attention the young Mitt Romney gave their son, a child he did not know, when the boy was dying of cancer. Party of strivers? Well, maybe David was on the phone to his editors while these folks were speaking or just got bored because they were mostly anonymous and not glamorous Upper West Side Paradise Bobos of any sort. . . . So why is Brooks writing this swill? I met him briefly and, as far as I can tell, he’s a nice guy and certainly a good writer. The answer is that he’s not so very different than the waitress he describes. He’s got a job and he wants to keep it. As the resident conservative at the NYT he can only go so far in telling the truth. If he went further, he’d risk unemployment (not to mention diminution of status).”
The speech that should have been seen by most TV viewers of the RNC 2012 convention — but which most of the viewers at home did not see — was the little noticed yet important testimony of Jane Edmonds, Mitt Romney’s Secretary of the Workforce when he was Governor of Massachusetts. Coming before Clint Eastwood, Marco Rubio and Romney himself, it is not surprising that it was missed. But if you flipped channels, most networks — regrettably, even including Fox News — decided instead to give its viewers the wisdom of its panel of pundits.
Edmonds, viewers at home would have found, is an African-American woman, who proudly called herself a “liberal Democrat.” In a strong and firm voice, Edmonds told the delegates and those who did watch her speech, that the Romney she got to know well when he was Governor was a supporter of women, appointing them to high positions in his administration. Moreover, she noted that Romney was a bold, strong administrator, who worked hard on behalf of the people he represented.
“The late Stephen Covey,” Edmonds said, “writes about 2 kinds of people: one type is all about themselves and their success. The other type works as hard as they can — and certainly succeeds, but their success is motivated by doing good for others. That’s how I see Governor Romney. He is authentic.”
Her very presence as a supporter of Romney for President indicated that even a self-proclaimed liberal who is also an African-American and a woman can unashamedly and publicly give her support to Romney’s campaign, undercuts the Democratic narrative in one fell swoop. It is not surprising that a network like MSNBC would choose not to broadcast her short moment in the program, but that most including Fox News did the same is inexcusable.
I saw her speech, and I agree.
UPDATE: Here it is.
MORE: Reader Kelli Sorrells says MSNBC did cover Edmonds’ speech: “As much as I despise MSNBC I can’t believe I have to write to defend them. I watched them on Thursday night for the entertainment factor as I always do on big political nights to witness the silliness live. They did show the Edmonds speech. I remember because Maddow immediately dismissed her speech stating something along the lines of “I don’t know what that was for other than Romney hired people in his administration. How that relates to being president, I’m not sure.” Thats my recollection and not a direct quote.” Perhaps they didn’t realize she was black until it was too late. . . .
HOW’S THAT HOPEY-CHANGEY STUFF WORKIN’ OUT FOR YA? (CONT’D): Majority of New Jobs Pay Low Wages, Study Finds. “While a majority of jobs lost during the downturn were in the middle range of wages, a majority of those added during the recovery have been low paying, according to a new report from the National Employment Law Project. . . . Low-wage jobs have not been growing especially quickly in this recovery; they account for such a big share of job growth mostly because midwage job growth has been so slow.”
I remember during the Bush recovery in 1992, we heard a lot of experts denigrating the President for an economy that was only creating “McJobs.” Will we hear that this election cycle?
UPDATE: Ed Morrissey was all over this one yesterday.
JAMES TARANTO ON SUBJECTING OBAMA TO SOME HEALTHY RIDICULE:
Here was our favorite line from Mitt Romney’s convention speech: “President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans and to heal the planet. My promise is to help you and your family.”
We liked it even better when we saw that the New York Times’s Nicholas Kristof had tweeted: “Seriously, Romney’s speech esp troubled me by mocking rising seas/climate change. The dismissiveness was appalling.” Gaia is a jealous Goddess, and She will not be mocked!
It actually hadn’t occurred to us that the Romney line was a repudiation of global warmism. If so, that’s lagniappe. What we enjoyed was the deft way in which Romney punctured Obama’s self-aggrandizement–by quoting his most immodest promise ever, pausing for effect, then making an almost comically modest promise of his own. . . .
Obama’s journalistic supporters live in a bizarre alternate reality in which a politician’s actual words mean nothing. When the president says something foolish and offensive, he didn’t say that. Meanwhile every comment from a Republican can be translated, through a process of free association, to: “We don’t like black people.”
The question of race is central to the leftist media’s protectiveness toward Obama, who has both benefited and suffered from a racial double standard. As the late Geraldine Ferraro pointed out in 2008–and was attacked for pointing out–Obama would not have risen so quickly had he been white. No sane person believed that stuff about casting down the oceans and mending “the planet,” but a lot of Americans thought electing a black president would be a salve for racial wounds.
Obama rose in 2008 as a symbol of racial aspirations–the black aspiration to be recognized as fully American and the white aspiration to redeem the sin of racism. That made it difficult to criticize him, much less to mock him. John McCain’s campaign was hobbled by a fear of appearing racist, and Obama himself received a degree of deference that is excessive for any politician.
The left has not moved beyond seeing Obama as a racial symbol, and that is for two reasons. First, his record as president doesn’t have much else to recommend it, so that crying racism is about the best they can do as an argument for re-election. Second, it is of great psychological importance to American left-liberals to believe that their opponents are racist and they themselves are not. Their self-image as a moral elite revolves around the imputation of invidious racial attitudes to others.
Romney and the Republicans, however, have moved on. . . . It is healthy for America that the president be criticized and even mocked. Deference to a Dear Leader has no place in a democracy. It’s healthy for race relations, too, that he be judged on his record rather than held to a lower standard in the name of racial progress. When a black politician is treated just like any other politician, that’s genuine progress.
Except to, er, “progressives.”
REAL WRATH-OF-GOD STUFF: Biblical-Type Floods Are Real, and They’re Absolutely Enormous. So far, geological evidence of cats and dogs living together, however, remains inconclusive.
UPDATE: Reader Rob Cooper writes: “Um… Bad news:”
We’re gonna need a bigger bowl.
MICHAEL LEDEEN: The Death Of The Left. “That’s what happens when you become an anachronism. For me, the greatest line of the week was Ryan’s, the one about the fading Obama poster on the wall of an unemployed young American. Once upon a time, the left was able to lay claim to intellectual and moral superiority, and to look at the conservatives with imperious disdain. No more. Their heroes are fading to the point where a cultural icon, from Hollywood of all places, sees that the seat of authority is entirely empty, and that it’s time to just let its nominal occupant go. Away.”
NEWS YOU CAN USE: Glass Shape Affects How Quickly People Drink Alcohol. “The participants were almost twice as slow when drinking alcohol from the straight-sided glass compared to the curved glass. There was no difference in drinking rates from the glasses when the drink was non-alcoholic. The researchers suggest that the reason for this may be because it is more difficult to accurately judge the halfway point of shaped glasses. As a result, drinkers are less able to gauge how much they have consumed.”
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OIKOPHOBIA UPDATE: Robert Wargas: Behold The Self-Hating White Person. “Since progressivism is largely a status game, in which people compete for social prestige by repeating a set of approved phrases and opinions to other status-seeking mandarins, it’s not surprising that some will go to sado-masochistic lengths to remain part of the alpha group. By now, the increasingly creepy tendency of using the word ‘white’ as a glib insult has become well established in left-wing commentary.”
To be fair, for many the self-hatred is fairly justified.
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HOT INTERSPECIES SEX: New DNA Analysis Shows Ancient Humans Interbred with Denisovans. “A new high-coverage DNA sequencing method reconstructs the full genome of Denisovans–relatives to both Neandertals and humans–from genetic fragments in a single finger bone.” Though technically if you can interbreed, it’s not actually “interspecies,” right?
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THE GROWTH SECTOR IN FASHION: Plus-sized clothes. “Fighting mediocre sales and a sluggish economy, retailers are finding there’s a booming market for plus-size clothing. While the category has been getting notice for years, clothing companies desperate for sales see zooming growth in dressing America’s expanding waistline. Many are opening specialty stores, expanding plus-size departments and targeting ads directly to the curvy woman. . . . More than one-third of American adults are obese and nearly two-thirds of women are at least overweight, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Experts say that at least half of women now wear dresses and pants size 14 or larger — which falls into the plus-size category — and this group controls nearly 30% of the purchasing power for clothes, according to NPD Group.”
I’m sure Michelle Obama would disapprove.
NOBODY SAID SHE WAS STUPID: Foreign Policy: Hillary Clinton staying as far away from Charlotte as physically possible.
UPDATE: Reader Jody Green is skeptical:
Not buying the Hillary crap.
I have thought for a while that if the election is close, Obama would play the Hillary for VP card (I am not the only one who thought that). Now that she will supposedly be out of the country, I figure that is proof that she will be the mystery speaker and will accept the nomination for VP. If the rules allow this, then it is Obama’s only chance. the press would talk about nothing else for the remainder of this election cycle.
The press will crow:
1. What a brilliant move.
2. He put his country first
3. Smart enough to remove the mistake of Biden
4. Dream Team etc.
If they do not do this it can only be for two reasons.
1. Hillary said take a hike
2. Obama is a true Narcissist that can not share the spotlight or admit he has failed to the point he needed her.
We will find out soon.
Well, if the Hillary story turns out to be bogus, Jody will have bragging rights. But I don’t think Obama is capable of admitting a mistake, and no matter how it’s spun, that’s what this would be.
ANOTHER UPDATE: A reader emails: “Not gonna happen. BHO chose Joe Biden as life insurance . Hilary as Veep would indicate a death wish.”
MORE: Reader Bob McKenna writes: “Jody is on to something. Conservative bloggers should be reporting it as a strong rumor in order to steal their thunder in case it really is being considered. Heck, maybe Sarah or Rush should recommend it to prevent it.”
Well, Sarah Palin has already advised Obama to dump Biden for Hillary. She was way ahead of the curve on that one. So if he does, she can just say “dance to my tune, little man, dance!”
JUST THE THING IF YOU LIVE IN SOUTHERN LOUISIANA: 9 Amphibious Autos.
THE SWEETNESS OF THEIR BITTER TEARS: Occupy RNC ends in tears, frustration. “Republican National Convention protesters sobbed in each other’s arms as their weeklong series of protests came to an abrupt and unremarkable end… Following a fragmented march against the GOP, TheDC’s photo team spoke to several protesters who said they were disappointed by low turnout at protests and the lack of open discussion between protesters and Republican leadership.”
Pro Tip: It’s easier to have an “open discussion” with people when you’re not dressed as a giant floppy vagina.
HIGHER EDUCATION BUBBLE UPDATE: When the Price of Shedding Student Debt Is Hopelessness. Oh, well, there’s always that fading Obama poster for comfort.
FROM PROF. JACOBSON, some political-donation advice.
THE GROWTH OF THE “MUD RUN.” “Mud runs, essentially military-style obstacle races in muck, might appall the neat freak but for some people mud is the medium for a challenging test of true grit and fitness.”
WELL, NOW WE KNOW THE CONVENTION WAS A SUCCESS, AS CHRIS MATTHEWS HAD A MELTDOWN WHEN IT WAS OVER: Unstable MSNBC Host in Angry Restaurant Confrontation.
THE SMOOTH PROFESSIONALISM OF THE EXPERIENCED OFFICEHOLDER: Joe Biden to table of Greek men: “I’m Joe Bidenopoulos.”
INSIDE OBAMA’S OODA LOOP: More from Roger Kimball, with an assist from Matt Drudge.
HEH: MOCKING OBAMA’S SEAT TWEET. I expect many more such photoshops.
UPDATE: Ronnie Schrieber sends this one:
What, me worry?
ANOTHER UPDATE: From Justin Katz:
MORE: From Justin Higgins:
JENNIFER RUBIN: The Media Filter Died Last Night:
Rattled and bitter that they could not knock the Romney-Ryan ticket off-message, the Obama team and its allies in the blogosphere fixated on Clint Eastwood. Listen, I was there and it was darn weird. But at times it was funny and devastating in its dismissal of the president’s excuses. And in clips and sound bites the day after the live performance, the oddness is diminished and the punch lines seem more biting. In simple terms, the movie icon encapsulated the message of the convention: If someone is doing a bad job, you have to fire him.
Eastwood apparently so annoyed the egomaniacal president that the leader of the Free World felt compelled to hit back via Twitter (“this seat is taken”) at the movie star. Talk about losing your presidential aura. Empty chair = Obama is now a powerful association. Will the chair be in ads?
In this, as in so many other artificial kerfuffles, the media’s feigned outrage only serves Romney’s purpose. Now everyone is familiar with Eastwood’s cracks, and the conversation has taken the place of any criticism of the two nominees’ speeches.
Thursday night was a critical point in the campaign and arguably the point at which Romney (with help from Eastwood) broke free of the media filter. Recall last week that the entire press corps was focused on Todd Akin. Then it became an obsessive plea for more details about Romney’s policies, which, unlike the president, he has. Then there was the fixation on likability. That went down the drain when on Thursday night Romney appeared, if not likable, admirable. I now await the argument that personal qualities are irrelevant to the presidency.
Related: Getting To Know Romney The Do-Gooder. “Whatever the reasons, the degree to which Romney has been a practitioner of personal kindness and good works is extraordinary. Whether he wins the election or not, it’s clear that Romney is a very unusual human being, with a combination of brains, hard-nosed business sense and competitiveness, and personal kindness that goes way beyond anything most people consider necessary or even possible. For a politician, this is so unusual as to be unique. . . . People keep saying about Romney, ‘the more I know of him the more I like him.’ Not just on this blog, but in comments all over the internet. It strikes me that Obama is just the opposite—the more people know of him the more they dislike him.”
I just wonder if the Dems will be able to put together a video marking Obama’s selfless acts of compassion when no one was paying attention.
UPDATE: Mark Steyn:
I’m not sure he could have pulled that off if he’d delivered a slick telepromptered pitch. As Mr. Hayward suggests, the hard lines packed more of a punch for being delivered in the midst of a Bob Newhart empty-chair shtick from the Dean Martin show circa 1968. Indeed, they were some of the hardest lines of the convention and may well prove the take-home (“We own this country . . . Politicians are employees of ours . . . And when somebody does not do the job, we’ve got to let them go”), but they seemed more effective for appearing to emerge extemporaneously from the general shambles.
The curse of political operatives is that they make everything the same. A guy smoothly reading platitudinous codswallop while rotating his head from the left-hand teleprompter to the right-hand teleprompter like clockwork as if he’s at Centre Court watching the world’s slowest Wimbledon rally is a very reductive idea of “professionalism.” Even politicians you’re well disposed to come across as slick bores in that format. Which is by way of saying Clint is too sharp and too crafty not to have known what he was doing.
Oh, and next time ’round, he should sing.
MORE: Reader Eduardo Alvarez reminds us that the empty chair had its own teleprompter.
And Ann Althouse comments: “Here’s the whole Eastwood performance. Is it really that hard to get? No, they’re merely playing dumb (and humorless), even though they want the other party to be known as ‘the stupid party.’”
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