The Spectacle Blog

Bob Barr Is Right

By on 4.11.06 | 12:48PM

The Honorable Mr. Barr is correct in his post below. The two key words are "law" and "sovereignty." We can have all the compassion in the world, and all the openness in the world, to people who will obey our laws, come here legally, and learn our language and our civics. But that doesn't mean we have to accept people who break our laws by their very entry -- and who, often as not, make no efforts to assimilate. Such people deserve nothing from us but spirited and active opposition to their very presence among us -- and a determination to send them home.

Bush Wrong

By on 4.11.06 | 12:24PM

President Bush defends his lack of initiative for an effective border security program by appealing to "America's decency" and reminding us we are first and foremost a "nation of immigrants." He's wrong. It is neither indecent nor inappropriate to protect our borders against those who would diminish our sovereignty and enter or remain in America in violation of our laws. And America is first and foremost a "nation of LAWS"; at least we used to be.

It’s Nice to be Noticed?

By on 4.11.06 | 12:17PM

I've been quoted as a very naughty jingoistic boy by Stan Cox over at Alternet for my review of CSA a couple weeks back. Here's the bit:

Despite, or maybe because of, the film's unpalatable message, reviews of "CSA" have been overwhelmingly positive. One harshly critical exception appeared last month, predictably, on the website of the hard-right American Spectator. Shawn Macomber expressed shock that any director would, as Willmott has done, portray an America that oversees an empire of "puppet democracies," launches an unprovoked, preemptive attack on another nation (Japan, in the film), tolerates Hitler's racial theories and outlaws all non-Christian religions. Macomber seems to regard such policies as inconceivable in the good old USA.

Berlusconi Burlesque

By on 4.11.06 | 11:49AM

For the definitive take on Silvio Berlusconi's many failings, see my dear friend Frank Rocca's report in today's National Review Online.

Re: Conflicted

By on 4.11.06 | 11:31AM

The mega-clash coming on immigration is yet another symptom of something happening across and within the whole of the West. Italy's mega-close elections are an eerie reminder of our own -- and Spain's, and Germany's, and Ukraine's. The deep, broad, evenly-matched antagonism on immigration on both sides of the Atlantic is patterned across a whole slate of issues. The whole worldview of a civilization is contested. Behold! The polarization of the West...

Conflicted

By on 4.11.06 | 11:26AM

Over at Ankle Biting Pundits Pat Hynes has sparked an interesting/intense debate on immigration policy by basically saying that the absurd rhetoric/actions of warring factions on both sides of the debate is making it difficult to voice support for anything. Who wants to throw their lot in with either side when they're behaving so poorly? (I can say I certainly feel similar trepidation after the apoplectic emails I've received for suggesting we shouldn't refer to human beings as "parasites" in my McCain column today.) Anyway, Hynes' post is well worth checking out and the comment string that follows it is disturbing, to say the least, if it stands as a portent of the what sometimes seems inevitable mega-clash ahead.

Re: Reuters’s Man in the Senate

By on 4.11.06 | 10:18AM

Tabin, you'll appreciate this from the Daily Mail: drug firms hype up diseases to boost sales, experts say. But surely an expert is more authoritative than a critic?

Re: Reuters’s Man in the Senate

By on 4.11.06 | 10:00AM

Dave: The wire service, long seen as hopelessly biased, is engaging in a variation on the "critics say" trope that you highlighted last week...

Reuters’s Man in the Senate

By on 4.10.06 | 7:35PM

Reuters has a fawning story today on Sen. Ted Kennedy's role in the immigration debate and rally. Actually, "fawning" doesn't do this adulation justice: Kennedy is "the leading liberal voice in the U.S. Congress," and "long seen as a crusader for America's poor and downtrodden." News to me. Did Kennedy's office edit the reporter's copy?

Which Came First? The Q or the Are What?

By on 4.10.06 | 7:24PM

The rather amusing report on Brit news that the MI-6 folk are creating a research center modeled after the Desmond Llewelyn character in the James Bond movies -- "Q" -- is a bit backward historically.

I've been searching for my copy of "Of Spies and Strategems" by Dr. Stanley Lovell. Lovell -- nicknamed "Dr. Moriarty" by OSS leader Wild Bill Donovan in World War 2 -- was the real "Q" long before Ian Fleming wrote the first Bond adventure novel.

Lovell and his team's record of diabolic invention spanned everything from the OSS spike (a four-pointed sharp tool that landed one point upward no matter how it was thrown on a German runway) to a totally silent and flashless small-caliber assassination pistol that Donovan demonstrated thusly.

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