Reader Mail

Misunderestimation Station

Bush justice. Plus: Islam in moderation. Religiously testy. You know China. And much more.

7.25.05

Send to Kindle

MIRROR, MIRROR
Re: Wlady Pleszczynski's It's the End of the World:

Wlady is so right. President Bush, the great misunderestimated, not only has managed to marginalize the Agenda Party, a/k/a the Media, but also has the entire WHP corps reduced to a bunch of sullen, petulant and shrill harpies. No doubt, Helen Thomas muses as to how exactly Karl Rove managed to place Ms. Plame's name in Sandy Berger's shorts. In May, you might remember, Mr. Tyrrell & the rest of us were dismayed by the cowardice demonstrated by the so-called "Gang of 14." The President, by nominating an almost perfect candidate for the S.C., has relieved this august group of thoughtful consensus makers of their awesome responsibility of restoring civility in the Senate. Only a handful of far left senators and their straggler's at MoveOn et al. are left to carry on the fight. This President means business.
-- A. DiPentima

I thought I was the only one who noticed it. The President's brilliant handling of the Roberts nomination. The President let the media flatulate for almost a whole news cycle on the wrong candidate. Then he trots out Roberts and with a big smile and says, here is my pick. The media consistently underestimate the President. Each time they do, they look more foolish than the last.

I have been trying to suppress it for some time now, but I can't any longer. I despise the MSM and many of its leading figures. This President is great!
-- Doug Santo
Pasadena, California

Alleluia -- the end of a media era that even today continues to "report" erroneous facts, distorted truth and their liberal, socialist agenda. For years, (I am now close to 48) I have detested the media. Being from New York I had the horrificN.Y. Daily News and other not worth mentioning papers I had to peruse on a daily basis. As far as ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN & MSNBC (recent years); I actually shunned these channels. I would hear what they had to say and then mentally say "I wonder what the truth really is." I remember by the age of fourteen realizing that "they" hated this country and the lack of respect to our Veterans was noted during every major anniversary -- i.e., Memorial Day, D-Day and the infamous Dec. 7th anniversary. Every year I would call these papers and ask them, "Did I miss it -- what page is your editorial or special report on honoring our brave veterans of these important dates on?"

Then came Rush Limbaugh, WABC talk radio, and lo and behold Fox News. I look forward to the New York Post every morning -- best political Page Six cartoon and Millard Fillmore is hilarious. Now here's what is great about all of the above mentioned. They report both sides (even Rush). But I don't feel like my "side" of the coin is not being addressed or misrepresented. THAT IS THE DIFFERENCE that the liberal media DOES GET but is infuriated that someone DARES opine differently from them. They are so insecure about their beliefs that to espouse another way is threatening to them and thus their anger, resentment and nastiness comes out. Just last night I watched on Fox News a clip from CNBC with Bernard Goldberg (once a liberal -- now wiser) who is being "attacked" by not one but FIVE liberals who despised his new book (which they admit they haven't even read) "The 100 People Screwing up America." The anger and hatred on their faces says volumes, but to actually have ONE individual stand up to the pack and not be flustered or wavering in his conservative values -- PRICELESS.

So American Spectator -- welcome to the new age of enlightenment. I only see you getting better and better.
-- Joellen M. Arrabito

The irony of the whole process of confirming Judge John Roberts to the Supreme Court is that some of the most ethically challenged politicians in our government will be the ones sitting in judgment of this fine man. And to the man who is going to sit under his apple tree reading up on Judge John Roberts, you are not fooling anyone. That is just liberal speak for, I'm going to turn over every rock that is under that apple tree, dig up any dirt under that apple tree and flip the lids of any nearby septic tanks to see what bubbles to the surface. And I will stall this nomination for as long as is humanly possible.

As a result of all of this, I am going to make the following prediction. America today is headed for a single party system. Why do I say that? It's because one party has lost its way and has become the party of obstruction and obfuscation.
-- Jim L
Cape Cod

BRAVO! Well stated and well said.

You have the attention of hundreds of Conservatives at FreeConservatives.

Wonderfully written, and you have my respect.
-- Frank W. Hurst

I read your article, "It's the End of the World." Nice. You did a fine job on that one.
-- Ted
Poway, California

I have one question: When a Democrat stares into a mirror, is there a reflection?

Sorry, bad Dracula humor...
-- Eric Alkire

IN MODERATION
Re: Christopher Orlet's See No Evil:

Christopher Orlet in "See No Evil" writes that moderate Muslims will sit out the war on terrorism. To that I say, "Who can blame them?" When I see the media and a mass of liberal intellectuals every day gleefully urinating on every institution and belief that has promoted individual self-discipline and restraint and responsibility in Western society since the dawn of history -- the church, marriage, the rule of law rather than rule by lawyers, belief in the sanctity of life and the right to be born, willingness to defend one's own country and to serve selflessly without fear or reward, how can we seriously expect Muslims to speak out against terrorism. We are asking them to hold convictions and defend institutions we very often don't value ourselves. It is a massive, blind hypocrisy and the sooner we understand that, the better. When Western society has willingly compromised every important conviction, every central value except a puerile wish that everybody should just stop being judgmental and get along with everybody else, I have no trouble at all understanding why Islamic fundamentalists despise us and everything we stand for. Islamic terrorists don't hate us for the values we hold, they hate us because, far too often, we have hold no values at all. It's that simple, folks, it ain't rocket science. Just read the New York Times or listen to the BBC and you will quickly see the point. It really is a hell of a stretch to expect moderate Muslims to defend a society that too often involves not much more than highly vocal, demonstrative self-loathing.
-- Christopher H
Canberra, Australia

Christopher Orlet's TAS column, "See No Evil," asks and partially answers the question of why so-called "moderate" Muslims are slow to condemn the worldwide chaos fomented by the murderous fanatic wing of Islam. The obvious answer is that they must live in mortal fear of the Islamists who are soullessly irrational, worship death and have a dangerously narcissistic view of their religion. Worse yet, however, are the "enlightened" Westerners who seek to understand Islamist motivation and would offer understanding and tolerance instead of strong resistance.

No genuine deity (or civilized society) should long tolerate savages who wear masks and chant their god's name when severing human heads, ambush innocents from their places of worship and rend the bodies of their own women and children with military explosives. Motivation be damned, barbarism is barbarism.

Unless and until Westerners lose their own fear of being labeled "Islamophobic," CLEARLY AND UNIFORMLY identify which portions of Islam are the enemy and begin the process of cooperatively weeding them out of world society forever, no moderate Muslims will feel safe in offering condemnation, let alone help to western civilization in existing together with Islam, as we must.
-- Deane Fish
Altamont, New York

Mr. Orlet's column is right on the mark, as far as it goes. But, in the end, he too is guilty of "seeing no evil."

Orlet fails to connect the last dot. The last dot is that the "moderate" voices of Islam cannot condemn terrorism. Consider the implications of Mr. Orlet's statement:

"Anyway, the moderates and the terrorists are basically in agreement on everything but the means to the end....

"Terrorism is not just a problem for the infidel; it is a problem within the Muslim community as well."

And just what IS the problem that so baffles "moderate" Moslems? It is this: they cannot condemn the terrorists without condemning Islam itself, and the reason that is so, is because terrorism and violence against infidels is an integral part of Islam. And just what is the "end" that Mr. Orlet refers to? Why, it is the triumph of Islam over the infidels, of course!

Hence we "infidels" are not at war with a "radical faction" of Islam. We are at war with Islam itself, period. It is time we recognized it and said it out loud. If I sound over the top, consider the reaction if Winston Churchill had said:

"Anyway, the moderate Nazis and the SS are basically in agreement on everything but the means to the end....

"Aggression against the Allies is not just a problem for the Allies; it is a problem within the Nazi community as well."
-- David J. Serbin
Alexandria, Virginia

We should ask why Islam is the only religion in the world we must fear. We do not fear Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Christianity, or even Witchcraft, but we do fear Islam. Furthermore, you might wonder whether Islam can withstand "Western Curiosity" as have the aforementioned major religions.
-- Richard D. Volkman, Publisher
Nebraska Journal-Leader
Ponca, Nebraska

Well said, and about time, too!

I do take issue with one thing: Mr. Orlet's opinion that "the U.S. and Britain cannot successfully fight terror if moderate Muslims continue to sit the war out." The hell we can't.

We beat the Axis without the aid of the "moderate" Germans and Japanese; Ronald Reagan faced down the Soviet Union without any help from the supposedly "moderate" wing of the Politburo. What is this talk of courting the "moderates" among people who have sworn to wipe us out, anyway? If the so-called Muslim moderates were any damn use, the killers would not be calling the Islamic tune.
-- Martin Owens
Sacramento, California

The question is, "Why are so many moderate Muslims soft on terror?"

The answer: Because we -- meaning the West -- have not made the "moderate" Moslems pay a price for their tacit approval of terrorism. Maybe the subway bombings are not that big of a deal. I mean, fifty dead is less than a jet going down. But if there is ever a WMD attack, the "moderate" Moslems will pay a fierce price for their ongoing fence sitting.
-- unsigned

Why do they hate us? Well, if al-Jazeera showed some happy Arab cab drivers living in Chicago and making a decent living, maybe that would help. Show them shopping on Michigan Avenue or going to Great America. But even better would be to show the Muslim world how nice things could be...build them a Super Wal-Mart, right in Baghdad. Stock it with prayer rugs, kebob meat, burka's, and associated footwear they like. You could have a special prayer section pointed to Mecca, or whatever else the local people would enjoy. And make sure the A/C works real well. People won't want to leave. The message? See, things aren't so bad in the Western world, and if you don't blow yourself up, look what you could have. How about that 42" plasma TV?
-- John P.
Elmhurst, Illinois

I disagree with Mr. Orlet, that "moderate" Muslims don't so much lack courage, as they do lack will. Oh, there's such a miasma of misunderstanding "words," these days. Take the way "liberal" lost its classical meaning, and apply this fact with utmost force to the fence-sitting word, "moderate."

As for "Muslims" and any kind of lack, all one must do is notice what the PLO and friends do to "moderate" Palestinians who even try to work with Israelis. With this as one's guide, despite so much faith in an afterlife with myriad virgins, gained by wicked martyrdom, I believe we can discern the true dividing line between people who claim to be of the Islamic faith.

The reason there has been a lack of 'coming out of the closet' by 'moderates', who should issue a fatwa against the idiots who've hijacked that religion is that they want to stay alive. Behind, and permeating, the entire uncivil war within Islam is that fact.

Indeed, you could say there are at least two ways of clarifying the ongoing war. On one side you have the civilized people, and on the other the barbarians. However, just as the US had to fight a Civil War when the South seceded, and along the way, Lincoln freed the slaves, in a similar way something like that is taking place within Islam.

You could say that the radical Islamic fascists are equivalent to the South, in 1861, and they want to "secede" from the modern world, while the more "moderate" members of their faith, equivalent to the North, want to stay in the modern world. Also, the ones who are "seceding" could be easily characterized as slaveholders -- and worse! The way they treat women, for example, points the way they do so.

Furthermore, just as in our Civil War, the warriors who fought so well, for the South, by and large were NOT slaveholders, but poor white "trash," with very little to gain by chivalrously defending their plantation way of life, nowadays you have the grandees, the dandies, like the ruling classes in Saudi Arabia, and other rich "playboys," like bin Laden, leading the radicals in Islam, but you don't find them blowing themselves up. Nah, they save that 'job' for the poor dark 'trash', such as all the low-level brainwashed masses emanating from their madrasses.

Since Islam has metastasized, and infects the whole world, this uncivil war itself, is bound by no spatial limits. Even worse, weaponry has advanced by many orders of magnitude, since 1865, and the powers-that-be a pulling the strings of the radicals are even more orders of magnitude richer than the American South. Hmm? Marry a surfeit of MONEY to the most extreme IDEOLOGY and many millions of SOLDIERS and dastardly WEAPONS, and all the time in the world's future to wreak havoc. Yes, Islam had better have its reformation, ASAP, for the world's sake. Some real "moderates," that is, self-defined Muslims who have real COURAGE, and the will to damn with fatwas the a**holes who would kill them, as infidels, must come over to the civilized world's side, with pithy alacrity!
-- unsigned

PASS FAIL
Re: George Neumayr's Antireligious Tests:

As usual, Mr. Neumayr is spot-on in his dissection of the issue at hand (take that, PBS!). I particularly appreciate his analysis of the potential "triangulation" effect on Catholic voters that Robert's nomination may have on the 2006 mid-terms. Senate Democrats have a real pickle on their hands!

The most interesting reaction to Robert's nomination will be that of New York's junior Senator; a "yes" vote on Roberts will seriously alienate the NARAL/MoveOn-types, while a "no" can cost her dearly in the heavily Catholic Northeast and Midwest in 2008. Quite a dilemma! And hats off to President Bush (the "dumb" one) for boxing them all into yet another delicate corner - media spotlight and all!
-- Gavin Valle
Peapck, New Jersey

All I can or need say is: God bless you, George. And thank you.
-- Mark Hughes
Austin, Texas

Regarding the article by George Neumayr. I would like to see you expand on this argument viz. Article VI of the U.S. Constitution ...There Shall Be No Religious Test...

Thank you.
-- Dan Wilson
Portland, Oregon

From the main page:

"Antireligious Tests
Political Hay
To counter the Democrats' anti-Catholic bigotry, John Roberts could point out that two Catholics signed the Constitution. Would they be unconfirmable?
George Neumayr, 7/21/2005 12:10:11 AM"

So it makes sense to ask:

"To counter the suggestion that the Democrats are anti-Catholic bigots, John Kerry could point out that he is a Catholic. Was he not the Presidential candidate?"

The suggestion that the Democratic Party is somehow anti-religious (name a couple of high-placed atheists...), or simply anti-Catholic, is just patent ridiculousness, but perhaps I was wrong to hope that fact would mean it wouldn't show up in the pages of your magazine. My mistake.
-- Jack Faraday

UNOCHINA
Re: J. Peter Freire's The Burden of Free Markets:

A very enlightened article by J. Peter Freire. China is not to be viewed as a benign country that merely wishes to invest in foreign business for the sake of making money. It is an expansionist country that has limited natural energy resources and it views the United States as the major impediment to its expansion in Asia and the Pacific Rim.

Now, in the late 1930s there was another Asia nation following a similar path. It was expansionistic and had limited natural resources. It had a militaristic culture and was building a large army and navy. And it viewed the United States as the chief impediment to its ambitions. Sounds very much like Red China in the New Millennium, doesn't it?

That nation was Japan. And, as we learned on December 7, 1941, they chose to use military force to neutralize US influence in Asia and the Pacific.

Red China is following a similar track. The acquisition of Unocal would accomplish two very important things from their perspective. First, it would increase their control of a petroleum source used by the US. And second, due to the large holdings Unocal has in the Pacific, they would gain significant influence along the Pacific Rim in places like Indonesia.

As I have cautioned before, the actions of Red China bear close scrutiny. They appear to be on a course that could ignite future conflict in the region. The fact that this acquisition was stymied is a good thing, but there will be other attempts in the future and each must be scrutinized carefully.
-- Michael Tobias
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida

Mr. Freire's commentary "The Burden of Free Markets" is a succinct and accurate assessment of our ultimately bankrupt trade relationship with China.

Money, especially when pursued at the expense of all other considerations, is truly the root of all evil.
-- Joseph Sheppard
Marietta, Georgia

THE OTHER SIDE
Re: George Neumayr's The New Eugenics:

I was hurt to see the very long article ("The New Eugenics") about terminating a pregnancy for medical reasons. I understand that there is a right to have opinions, but to put yourself behind something so strongly without having anything similar to the topic having touched your life, is more than insensitive. There wasn't one mention about saving a child from a life of pain, apart from just mental and or physical disabilities. I was more than vaguely pro-life until it was put onto my shoulders to save someone such suffering. This isn't something you can understand until you are faced with it, you research it, and talk to people- or their caretakers -- who have been touched by both sides of the decision.

Why not write an article that would be constructive? Instead of just writing how bad people are, a good journalist would try to let people know that there are options. There are many people in this country that adopt disabled children if the child is unwanted, but not wanting to care for a disabled child is not always the reason for such a hard decision!

It would be interesting to know where Neumayr thinks we, as a society should draw the line? Many of these babies would die if they weren't immediately operated on after birth, but there isn't a choice about that when the baby is delivered full term. Once a child is outside the womb, there is no limit to what the medical field will try. How many surgeries should we put a baby through just so that they can function enough to survive? Should a baby be kept alive if it needs a feeding tube it's whole life? Or a respirator? I understand a deformity such as a deformed foot, or a missing finger is little reason to terminate a life. I understand that miracles happen. When you're faced with putting someone through severe mental and physical disabilities, as well as pain starting from the moment they are born, if not before- there is only one humane response. What technological advances should we stop? If I had carried to term, and were to deliver without technology, I would have probably died as well as my son wouldn't have been able to go through the birth canal at full term. I may have miscarried early on, but good old technology and medical studies -- "Take these, and try bed rest."

Decisions like these are the ones that need to prayed or meditated on. I don't think it was the devil who let me send my son to heaven. A mothers' instinct is to protect her babies. If Neumayr thinks I am still wrong, I still would rather my son be in heaven and deal with the consequences for myself when I die. The selfish thing to do would be to hold on to what I could of this child and his life, no matter how hard it would be for him. I won't willingly have another baby because the first half of pregnancy is such a hard thing to go through (being sick 24/7 for 4 months, etc.) and I can't go through that again, especially with the worry about everything going OK. I will always have my son in my heart. I will always grieve for my child that I miss so dearly. Still, I would rather be sad for the rest of my days than to put someone through such pain.

It would be nice for a journalist to report both sides of the story, not just bury his head in books, numbers, and reports.

-- Forever Understanding
Issaquah, Washington

LANCE ARMSTRONG'S RIDE
Re: Jay D. Homnick's The French Conniption:

Just wanted to say this was a beautifully written article. Reading it was like looking at a garden filled with different flowers. Everywhere I looked there was another clever turn of phrase to please my mind. Thank you.
-- Carla Lowe

AT ATTENTION
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.'s Gen. William Westmoreland, RIP and Reader Mail's America's Best:

I like to thank Mr. Tyrrell for remembering. Gen. Westmoreland was a good man and fine soldier, we will miss him. He was a great American most of all.
-- Fred Johnsen
Irving Texas

Like this Article

Print this Article

Print Article