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Seeing Is Believing

Redesign intelligence. Plus: the Archbishop of Terror. Among the Stalinoids. Boycott CBS. The I.F. Stone Spectator. And more.

10.28.03

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INTELLIGENT REDESIGN
Re: Can You Believe It?!:

The new look, of the website, is great. I read The Prowler every day to keep up on what is going on in politics and culture. Keep 'em coming
-- Eric Waldner

Love your page, but please increase the type size.

I'm one of your senior readers and have great difficulty reading your introductory message and even greater difficulty reading the home page with its small type and gray background.

I want to be able to relish every word.
-- Dennis Losness
Amery, Wisconsin

It's good to know my beloved Spectator is rising from the ashes -- by the way, I have a secret Crush on Mr. Tyrrell. And Wlady ain't no slouch. However, in reading about the proposed format in your online credits, I couldn't help wondering about "compassionate" being included in the new look. I always thought every article in the Spectator was compassionate -- conservatism by it's very nature is an extremely loving ideology. Think about it -- good versus evil. We conservatives are just a bunch of love bugs, we don't like the bad guys. We think they egregiously muddy up the atmosphere, like great swooping vultures of doom. It follows naturally that our compassion for our fellows is mirrored in our ability to point out the error of the vulture's perverted ways (we love bugs cherish the truth), thereby reducing political and cultural pollution and making it easier for the rest of us to breathe. Now, that's compassion. :-)
-- Barbara Haugen
Cedar City, Utah

Hi, I can hardly read your fonts on my Presario 1500 set at 1280 x 1024. The text uses only half the width of my screen. Can you make the text larger so I can see it? Thank you,
-- Basil Weir
San Jose, California

FYI: Congrats on the new website layout, and two months ago I resubscribed to your magazine. Best wishes,
-- Stephen "Doc" Watson
Beaumont, Texas

Personally I would have preferred that you would have left it alone. Just like all the good Liberals, you can not seem to resist the temptation to radically alter whatever is working just fine and to insist on not changing those things that are in complete shambles. I will, however, adjust....
-- Ken Shreve
New Hampshire

I liked it better the way it was, but then, I'm a conservative.
-- Ralph Tuggle

LENIN PRIZE
Re: James Bowman's wry "Death Comes for the Archbishop," I think what the A.B. is saying about al Qaeda is like what another saintly man, Vladimir Ilich Ulyanov, once said: "To make an omelet you have to crack a few eggs." And an omelet is a good thing, eh?
-- Jeffrey S. Erickson
Davidson, North Carolina

So Archie-b. Rowan thinks the goals of killing, converting, or enslaving all Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Bahai's, seculars, and other infidels, and for that matter all Muslims who aren't themselves Jihad Nazis, are serious moral goals? Talk about a really weird self-referential morality.
-- Kato the Eldar

AMONG THE STALINOIDS
Re: Shawn Macomber's Wrong Answer:

Pro-Kucinich Stalinists? Yes, they are that out of touch.

I recently attended an exhibition entitled "Voices of Dissent" at one of Houston's top-ranked artistic venues. (My excuse: a close friend was doing the A/V portion of a performance in the main hall. My actual purpose: opposition research, of course.) Two tables right next to each other mirrored your observations at the protest in DC: at one, Kucinich for President; at the other, Communists of the most vile stripe, featuring literature idolizing Stalin and Mao. I say "idolizing" instead of "defending" because they acknowledge nothing for which their heroes would need to apologize.

I picked up some Kucinich literature and read of his program. In short, free stuff for everyone, and no mention whatsoever of how it gets paid for. So much for that.

What really got me going, though, were the real Reds. Part of my exchange with the Maoist follows.

"How many deaths would you attribute to the policies of Mao Tse-tung?" I asked.

She answered, "I don't think you can even ask that question, because..."

I gently interrupted, "No, if there's one thing I'm sure of, it's that I can definitely ask that question, and that's the one I asked. Would you care to answer it?"

She offered, "Where else but in Mao's China could the People gather together and openly criticize and call for the removal of their leaders?", evidently confusing a purge with some sort of New England town meeting. She further bobbed and weaved, but in exasperation at her inability to deter me from the subject, she finally admitted to: "None." That's right: the number of dead from Mao's policies comes to zero.

"That's no better than Holocaust denial," I told her and added that this demonstrated that she had no more credibility than if she were wearing a swastika armband. Sensing that I was a running dog lackey of fascist reactionaries, she gave up and sat back down, exchanging a glance with the Stalinist that seemed to ask, "What can you do with such people?"

The answer to that question, of course, involves words like "gulag," "re-education," "laogai," "Stasi," and "Lubyanka."

Cheers,
-- Stephen Foulard
Houston, Texas

STRIKING RESEMBLANCE
Re: The Washington Prowler's The Joys of Jesse:

No matter how underhanded, bigoted or demagogic Jesse may be, it is not his daughter (born out of wedlock) who deserves to be called illegitimate.
-- Stu Margrey
Denton, Maryland

You credit the definition of chutzpah to Leo Rosten, but the definition is (at least) 100 years older than that, and very likely older still. Better start reading some of those old texts in the original Yiddish ...
-- Seth Kurtzberg

THE QUALITY OF CRUELTY
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.'s Cruel and Not Unusual:

I was so pleased to read your eloquent article about this dastardly production. I hope I will see many more such articles and hear much more outcry in the days ahead from all who demand accuracy and decency and justice.

I would be so grateful for information (websites, e-mail addresses) about the sponsors of this upcoming disgraceful character assassination. Do you know how this information might be obtained?

I have written to express my views to CBS via the "feedback" link at the official website. However, I know that I won't be getting "blood from a turnip."

Thank you so much,
-- Carol Williamson
Highland Village, Texas

NORTHERN EXPOSURE
The American Left has demanded that America withdraw from Iraq as a rational response to the murder of about 100 American soldiers over the last six months.

According to Canadian government statistics, there were 554 homicides in 2001 in Canada, a country with a population comparable to that of Iraq.

What would the Left suggest that Canadians do?

I thought as much.
-- David Govett
Davis, California

MISTAKEN IDENTITY
Today, I got a solicitation from your magazine with an insert by Molly Ivins.

Molly states that the editor is a "Ben A. Franklin." I've searched your web and find no such name referenced to as your editor.

If there is someone there who knew I. F. Stone, please let me know and if that person was the "Ben A. Franklin" referenced in Molly's insert.

I used to subscribe to and read I. F. Stone's newsletter and found him one of my favorites. If Molly (who is also one of my favorites) says that the Washington Spectator is anything like Izzy Stone's newsletter, then I am thankful. Just on the basis of Molly's endorsement, I have sent in my ten dollars for the offered 22 issue subscription.

I suppose I can afford the ten dollars even if there is no "Ben A. Franklin" and no one there knew Izzy Stone.

Thank you,
-- Richard L. Smith
Montague, California

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