Cincinnati Reds pitcher Homer Bailey threw a no-hitter against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park. So yes, Homer threw a no-hitter on the road. The Reds won the game 1-0.
It is the first no-hitter by a Reds pitcher since Tom Browning threw a perfect game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on September 16, 1988. (I remember Browning’s perfecto because he did it on my birthday).
This is the first time the Bucs have been on the wrong end of a no-hitter since Bob Gibson turned the trick in 1971.
Now Homer Bailey is no Bob Gibson but he was Gibson-like tonight striking out a career high 10 batters.
Bailey, 26, has had a good season with the NL Central champion Reds with a 13-10 record and an ERA of 3.75 ERA and 162 strikeouts in 204 innings pitched.
There have been seven no-hitters in the 2012 season.
Chicago White Sox pitcher Philip Humber got things started with a perfect game against the Seattle Mariners in April.
Less than two weeks later, Los Angeles Angels ace Jered Weaver no-hit the Minnesota Twins.
There were three no-hitters in the month of June. New York Mets lefty Johan Santana no-hit the St. Louis Cardinals on June 1st. It was the first no-hitter in Mets’ history.
One week later Kevin Millwood and five other Seattle Mariners pitchers threw a combined no-hitter against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Millwood had previously thrown a no-hitter on his own in 2003 when he was a member of the Philadlephia Phillies.
Five days later, San Francisco Giants pitcher Matt Cain threw the second perfect game of the year against the hapless Houston Astros.
Two whole months would elapse until Seattle Mariners’ ace Felix Hernandez threw a MLB record third perfect game in one season against the Tampa Bay Rays. It was the third no-hitter to take place at Seattle’s Safeco Field in 2012.
With Bailey’s no-hitter, it marks the most no-hitters thrown in a single season since 1991. There were also seven no-hitters thrown in 1990.
And we still have a few days left in the 2012 season so there’s always a chance for another gem to be added to the list.
Now some might say that no-hitters have become commonplace. But everything goes in cycles. Prior to all those no-nos in 1990 and 1991 there weren’t any no-hitters thrown in 1989 and only one no-hitter thrown in 1992.
I don’t care how many no-hitters are thrown. If you’re watching one in progress on TV or happen to be there in person you get caught up in the excitement. No-hitters never get old.
WOW! What a performance by the Americans this afternoon! Bubba Watson and Webb Simpson roared out of the gate with seven birdies on the first eight holes en route to routing Paul Lawrie and Peter Hanson. Keegan Bradley kept us his phenomenal play and Phil Mickelson played superbly as well, to beat the formidable pair of McIlroy/McDowell. Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar were solid throughout in beating Justin Rose and Martin Kaymer. And the Woods/Stricker match against Westwood and Nic Colsaerts was one for the ages. Through 17 holes, Woods and Stricker were an absolutely splendid nine-under as a team for the round — and yet they trailed by one, because Colsaerts had putted like a maniac to post eight birdies and an eagle on his own ball. Amazingly, Colsaerts also lipped out twice, without which he would have been threatening a 60 on his own ball. At Medinah! Abso-friggin-lutely unbelievable stuff for a guy in his very first Ryder Cup match in his life. I wrote at noon that Colsaerts was capable of incredibly streaks, good and bad — and wow, did he prove the first! Without Lee Westwood helping much at all, all afternoon, Colsaerts alone was leading two of the world’s best players, in tandem, both of whom were playing excellent golf. Words fail to describe how good he was.
Now, a hat tip to Woods, who in the morning played one of his worst rounds ever. In the afternoon round, he showed what has long made him a champion. After opening with a birdie to erase the morning’s stench immediately, he also birdied 5 on the front side. Then, on the back, amazing stuff: He birdied 10, birdied 11, birdied 14, barely missed birdie at 15, birdied 16, birdied 17, and then striped two straight shots on 18 to give himself a chance to birdie yet again and at grab another half point for tye U.S.A. despite the heroics of Colsaerts. His 16-foot putt broke left just as it reached the hole, caught the edge of the left side of the hole… but didn’t fall. So Woods and Stricker get a second loss on their card, which makes it look like they played badly, But Stricker played okay in both rounds, and Woods redeemed an awful morning round. No disgrace at all.
So the Americans end the first day not behind, as they so often are in these matches, but instead ahead 5-3 — a very significant edge.
Thank goodness I was wrong about Phil Mickelson’s start in the Foursomes (although I still hope he sits down at least one match tomorrow, so he will be rested for singles). Mickelson was okay this morning, and his partner Keegan Bradley was absolutely spectacular, which meant they won a match I had the Americans losing. I also was surprised at how poorly Lee Westwood played, helping hand the third match to a steady team of Jason Dufner and Zach Johnson. So the U.S.A. took two matches I thought they would either lose or, at best, tie. On the other hand, I was right to expect the McIlroy/McDowell team of the Euros to play like studs: Jim Furyk and Brandt Snedeker threw a two-under-par round at them, which in the alternate shot format is really, really solid… but the Northern Irishmen won anyway. And in the last month, Tiger Woods played the single worst round of golf I have ever seen him play. With him spraying shots all over creation and also duffing a few pitch shots, he dragged down partner Steve Stricker. They were plus-3 as a team through 16, before the Engish duo of Poulter and Rose mercifully closed them out.
Result: Through one session, a 2-2 tie, which is better than I had expected from the U.S., thank goodness.
In the afteroon, i question the Euro teams, with Captain Olazabal somewhat surprisingly sitting out Luke Donald, Sergi Garcia, and Ian Poulter. I like the American pairings far better — even the last pairing of Woods and Stricker again, because I just have a hunch that Woods can’t possibly play as badly in the afternoon round as he did this morning. They are matched against a struggling Westwood and rookie Nic Colsaerts, a hugely long hitter with a deft all-around game, but who is prone to streaky play both good and bad. I expect the Americans to win two matches and halve one or two others, and thus to go into tomorrow with a lead. This time, I hope I am right.
In case you haven’t heard about the federal government’s free cell phone program, “Lifeline”, derisively called the ObamaPhone by critics (including me), it’s not a joke, even though it seems like it should be:
Here then are the key features of the ObamaPhone:
Congressman Tim Griffin (R-AR) has a YouTube video about this outrageous program and its costs:
As long as we’re mentioning ThePeoplesCube.com web site, this is really funny too:
President Obama accused Mitt Romney of shooting first and asking questions later when responding to violence unfolding in the Middle East. But a quick review of the timeline, and the White House’s “evolving” explanation for the attacks on the Benghazi consulate are beginning to make it clear that Obama’s the one who’s guilty of speaking too soon.
“Let’s be clear, these protests were in reaction to a video that had spread to the region,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Sept. 14.
Secretary Clinton, during the transfer of remains ceremony the same day: “We’ve seen rage and violence directed at American embassies over an awful Internet video that we had nothing to do with. It is hard for the American people to make sense of that because it is senseless, and it is totally unacceptable.”
The U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations continued this spurious and completely uninformed messaging: “Based on the best information we have to date … it began spontaneously in Benghazi as a reaction to what had transpired some hours earlier in Cairo, where, of course, as you know, there was a violent protest outside of our embassy sparked by this hateful video.”
Now, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says that the 9/11 attack was not only carried out by terrorists, but it was also pre-meditated. So much for that “spontaneous reaction to a YouTube video.”
What Obama attacked Romney for — speaking before the facts were known — is precisely what the administration wound up doing for the subsequent two weeks.
Meanwhile, Romney’s initial statement stands on its own. At the time, Romney said that the Obama administration has responded to these attacks by sympathizing with the aggressors. “I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi. It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.” The press even asked the same question five times about whether he regretted speaking too soon — a leading question revealing that the media had already decided what the story was.
Two weeks later, and perhaps most significantly, the president spoke before the U.N., condemning the attacks, while also struggling to find common ground. The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam. But to be credible, those who condemn that slander must also condemn the hate we see in the images of Jesus Christ that are desecrated, or churches that are destroyed, or the Holocaust that is denied.”
Even this validates Romney’s criticism. Slandering the prophet of Islam is not on the same scale as destroying churches. The arrest of a man for his involvement with the film, and the fact that he hails from Egypt, makes it worse: In Egypt, this criticism would get him killed, making him a religious and political refugee.
And the president of the United States has made it absolutely clear before the General Assembly of the United Nations that these statements, no matter their substance, are akin to burning down a church.
Sounds like a guy who shoots first and never bothers asking questions.
As someone who has both children and guns, this horribly sad story reminds me of the importance of good parenting, both in terms of raising a child who won’t do stupid, criminal things, but also who understands the potential risks of such behavior, including from horrendous misapprehensions of any given situation.
Rarely has a news story struck a chord with me as this one has…it’s the sort of thing I would not have really understood until becoming a parent myself.
Obama, Romney move Battle to Virginia for Military Votes (Washington Times)
China’s Bo Xilai expelled and accused of Corruption (BBC News)
Police: Minnesota Shooter kills 4, then Self (ABC News)
Bank of America to pay $ 2,43B to settle Lawsuit related to Merril Lynch Aquisition (Washington Post)
France unveils temporary 75 Percent Super-Rich Tax Rate (Huffington Post)
Social Media have big Dabate Plans (Politico)
Nod to Obama by Netanyahu in Warning to Iran on Bomb (NY Times)
Syrian Forces, Rebels Battle at Allepo; Diplomats meet at UN (CNN News)
The Obama Press votes early (National Review)
In my view, the long-term damage done by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will be looked back on through history with equal scorn as that eventually heaped on Alan Greenspan. They each completely ignored the obvious negative consequences of holding interest rates too low for too long, with Greenspan having substantial responsibility for the housing bubble and Bernanke likely to have responsibility for inflation as well as for aiding and abetting out-of-control federal deficit spending.
No doubt that one problem is the Fed’s “dual mandate” in which they are required to focus not just on price stability (the proper role of a central bank) but also on employment (not a proper function of a central bank, not least because, as proven over the past couple of years, they have very little ability to influence employment, particularly in the presence of terrible fiscal and regulatory policy coming from the White House and Congress.) Congress should remove the Fed’s second mandate and either not replace it or else replace it with a mandate of focus on a stable currency.
In any case, the Fed has recently embarked on its third effort at “Quantitative Easing,” which is code for “we have nothing left to try because all our usual tools have failed, and we’re not at all sure this will work either — especially because we can’t prove the first two times did anything other than cause a bubble in the bond market.”
But let’s give the Fed the benefit of the doubt and judge them by their stated goal of boosting the economy and employment with their “nonstandard” (read “desperate”) approach.
According to economist Brian Wesbury, the Fed deserves precious little credit on that score, though they have certainly planted a ticking time bomb beneath the American economy:
I am a huge fan of U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Davis Love III, but I think he has made a mistake in the first Foursomes (alternate-shot) pairings for Friday. He has a very, very hot hand in Dustin Johnson (four straight top 10s) on his team who he is sitting out, while he plays Phil Mickelson in the opening matches even though Mickelson has been highly inconsistent since April. And here’s the deal: I would ALWAYS want Mickelson in Four-ball (best ball), because he is always prone to create magic. But he also is wild enough that it puts a huge pressure on his playing partner to have to play Mickelson’s foul balls, which are many, and which is what is necessary for a partner to do in Foursomes. Mickelson can get himself out of weird places, because he is so inventive, but most players can’t do those things. The time has come to stop the star system in which Tiger and Phil are pretty much expected to play all five matches in three days; that’s asking too much: It wears them out. Why not send the signal that the team is strong enough top to bottom that they do not need to use Phil and Tiger as a crutch like that? I would have sat Phil in the morning and gotten Johnson right into things. Then, Phil would be ready for the other four matches — and especially better rested for the singles on Sunday.
As it is, I expect the Euros to win 3 (or at least 2 and a half) of the first four points, with Tiger and Stricker beating Poulter and Rose, but the U.S. doing no better than a “halve” in any of the other three matches.
I think, top to bottom, the U.S. does have its best team in a fair number of years, but I expect that with a gap to make up after the opening Foursome, plus the psychological downer of falling behind early, the Americans will be struggling to catch up throughout.
Meanwhile, I expect three Euros: McIlroy, who will like the long course with softish greens; Sergio Garcia, who has two superb finishes in PGAs at Medinah, and Luke Donald, who has played the course a lot because he lived so long in the Chicago area. On the U.S. side, I expect great things from Woods, who won both those PGAs at Medinah and who is playing rather well recently; Furyk, who has something to prove after several recent collapses and a weak overally Ryder Cup record that doesn’t reflect his grit; and Stricker, another midwesterner who seems rather unflappable.
All of which adds up to a tight match throughout the three days, but with the U.S. always trying to come from just a little behind. I do expect the Americans to gain more points than the Euros in Sunday singles, but I expect either McIlroy, Garcia or Donald to make the key putt with the whole competition on the line to ensure the 14-14 tie and the narrow retaining of the Cup.
I hope I’m wrong. Go, U.S.A.!
Great column today by Gary Palmer of the Alabama Policy Institute. Do click through the link.
It has long been understood that nations go into decline when the moral character of their citizens go into decline. Not only do large segments of the population neglect their civic responsibilities, but far too many of those who do participate do so primarily out of personal self-interest. And this is not just true for liberals who want to expand entitlement programs to “…spread the wealth around.” It is also true for conservatives who turn a blind eye to government corporate welfare and other programs that benefit them.
Our system of government as a constitutional republic cannot continue indefinitely if half of all Americans who vote are at odds with the other half over fundamental truths and principles regarding the role and scope of government.
When we have almost 40 million people on food stamps; almost 50 percent of all wage earners paying no income tax; almost 40 percent of all children born out-of-wedlock; social classes pitted one against another; and race and gender used for the advancement of a political agenda, society has become unbalanced to the point of tearing the nation apart.
Clearly, these are not the values of a great nation and it is a problem that will not self-correct. It will take leaders with conviction and courage to challenge the American people to a great awakening of the virtues that allowed America to become a great nation……
Gary is right. This election is about far more than economics. Maybe one day the Romney campaign will figure that out.
On Thursday, Nakoula Nakoula, the “film maker” responsible for the pathetic YouTube video clip which the Obama administration blames for violence across the Muslim world, was arrested for violating the terms of his probation.
As part of that probation, which was part of a conviction for bank fraud for which Nakoula served more than a year in prison, he was not allowed to use a computer or the Internet without prior approval of his probation officer. He did not get that permission prior to posting his silly video clip to YouTube.
The only part of this story which is interesting is the part we don’t know yet: How will the Obama administration, desperate to not be responsible for the first murder of an American ambassador since the Carter administration, use this news to further try to blame “a criminal” for the failure of the State Department?
By the way, Fox News reported today that despite all the stories we were told right after the attack on our consulate in Benghazi about an FBI investigation, not a single FBI agent has yet been to Benghazi. Nice job controlling the crime scene. Is there any chance that there is anything left for the FBI to investigate?
Incompetence piled upon incompetence.
By the way, if Libya is too dangerous for a team of FBI agents, then why was it considered safe enough for Ambassador Stevens and a skeleton and perhaps unarmed “security” crew — not comprised of US Marines?
The Cleveland Indians have fired manager Manny Acta with half a dozen games left in the 2012 season. Bench coach Sandy Alomar, Jr. has been named the interim manager.
Acta had been the helm of the Tribe since 2010. He previously managed the Washington Nationals between 2007 and 2009.
The Indians showed promise in 2011 before fading in the second half. They had a strong start this season as well. As recently as July 21st, the Indians were 47-47. Although they were a .500 team, the Tribe was only 3½ games back of the Chicago White Sox for first place in the AL Central. Instead, they have lost 44 of their last 62 games including an atrocious 5-24 in August. At 65-91, they are tied for last place in the AL Central with the Minnesota Twins.
Given Alomar’s long standing connection to the Tribe I wouldn’t be surprised if they offered him the managerial reins on a permanent basis.
John Silber, the longtime President and later Chancellor of Boston University, has passed away from complications of kidney failure. He was 86.
The Texas born Silber may be best known for having unsuccessfully run for Governor of Massachusetts as a Democrat in 1990 against Republican William Weld. Here was a rare instance in which the Democrat was actually more conservative than the Republican. However, Silber was not known for his diplomacy and his bluntness would cost him with Massachusetts voters as demonstrated in this interview with Natalie Jacobson.
Yet there was no question of Silber’s intelligence and he was equally comfortable debating Noam Chomsky on U.S. foreign policy in Central America as he was discussing the state of contemporary American architecture.
Judging by this interview in which Silber described the late Howard Zinn’s The Peoples’ History of the United States as “one of the most incompetent and inaccurate histories of this country that has ever been written,”; I think it is safe to say you won’t find a college or university hiring a president like John Silber and we are the worse for it.
Washington Nationals third base coach Bo Porter has been named the new manager of the Houston Astros. He will commence the job in the 2013 season.
It is Porter’s first big league managerial job. He has been on the coaching staff of the Florida Marlins, Arizona Diamondbacks and has been with the Nats since 2011. Porter does have managerial experience at the minor league level in the Marlins’ organization. A 40th round draft pick by the Chicago Cubs in 1993, Porter had a brief stint in the majors as a player with the Cubs in 1999, the Oakland Athletics in 2000 and the Texas Rangers in 2001 collecting 27 hits.
I hope Porter enjoys his post-season with the Nationals because it is going to be long season in Houston next year. The Astros enter today with a 51-105 record, the worst in MLB. They are 42½ games back of the Cincinnati Reds. Houston has scored 200 fewer runs than they have allowed. Ouch!
In mid-August, the Astros dismissed Brad Mills. The Astros were 39-82 at the time. They have fared no better under interim manager Tony DeFrancesca with a 12-23 skid. Since June 28th, the Astros are 19-61.
The worst probably isn’t over as they move from the NL Central to the AL West where they will compete against the likes of the Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Angels and the Oakland Athletics. The Astros make the Seattle Mariners look like an offensive juggernaut.
If nothing else, Porter will gain invaluable experience as a big league manager. But it’s going to be a steep learning curve.
I wish Porter the best of luck in his new job. He’s going to need it.
Character actor Herbert Lom has passed away of natural causes at the age of 95.
The Czech born Lom fled to Britain to escape Nazi occupation. He soon started a film career and was generally cast as the villain. Lom appeared in films such as the original version of The Ladykillers, Spartacus and El Cid. In 1953, Lom also starred as the King of Siam in the London version of The King & I.
But Lom is best known for his portrayal of the beleaguered Inspector Dreyfus in half a dozen Pink Panther films over a period of thirty years. Most of these films were, of course, with his Ladykillers co-star Peter Sellers who shot to international stardom as Inspector Clouseau.
I leave you with a scene from The Pink Panther Strikes Again in which Clouseau visits Dreyfus at a psychiatric hospital and proceeds to make things much, much worse.
John Fund and Hans von Spakovsky are on the case. I explain here.
Von Spakovsky, meanwhile, devastatingly refuted the leftist arguments against laws requiring voters to show identification at the polls. Critics say the laws make it too difficult to vote, especially for minorities. Yet, as von Spakovsky explained, when voter-ID laws went into effect in Indiana and Georgia for the 2008 elections – after federal judges noted that plaintiffs could not produce a single witness who would be unable to vote because of the new law – minority turnout increased by far more in those states than it did elsewhere in the country.
The reality, von Spakovsky explained, is that it is the corruption of fraud, not ID laws, that deters voting. Consider: After a series of 11 election-fraud convictions in Greene County, Alabama last decade, minority turnout went up. As one elderly black woman explained, she cast a ballot for the first time in years because “her vote was finally going to count.”
One line from Fund that did not make it into my column, but that is worth worrying about, was this: To win an election these days (especially if you are on the right), “You need a margin beyond litigation.”
It should not come to a battle of lawyers. Reform is needed now.
Below is a story I wrote for the Spectator last May. I honestly believed it would be become a major part in the campaign. Instead, dead silence. Even after a couple of people mentioned it at the Republican Convention, no one followed up. The New York Times has run one front-page story about how Mitt Romney cut someone’s hair when he was 16 and another “analyzing” his support of the Vietnam War while in college. But they are blithely uninterested in how he has behaved as an adult in a position of responsibility.
So here it is again. At a time when the Republican candidate is being portrayed as a cold-hearted businessman interested only in profits and shipping jobs to China, it seems as if it ought to have some relevance.
By William Tucker
Here’s a story that may help New York Times columnist Gail Collins get over her obsession with the incident of Mitt Romney and the dog on the car.
In 1996, two years after Romney had returned to Bain Capital after running unsuccessfully against Ted Kennedy for Senate, Robert Gay, a partner at Bain, came to him and confided that his 14-year-old daughter Melissa was missing. She had sneaked out of their Connecticut home three days before, gone to a rock concert in New York City and hadn’t been heard from since.
Gay was embarrassed about confessing his dilemma and didn’t expect anything more than a little commiseration. Instead, he was amazed at Romney’s reaction.
Obama ducks meeting with ‘Bibi’: Clinton to meet with Israel’s Netanyahu (Washington Times)
Syria Refugees to reach 700,000 by Year’s End - UNHCR (BBC News)
Paul Ryan says President Obama’s Policies ‘Project Weakness’ (ABC News)
Stand up, America (National Review)
Chiniese Dissident Artist Ai Weiwei loses Tax Evasion Apeal (CNN News)
‘Super PACS’ finally a Draw for Democrats (NY Times)
Indian Ocean Earthquakes triggered Quakes globally (USA Today)
A week ago I warned that people on the right were underestimating the grave damage from Mitt Romney’s remarks on the “47 percent.”
I guarantee that the numbers for Romney will be worse in the next few days. Dead solid guarantee.
Romney desperately needs to reset his campaign. Paul Ryan’s speech to the Values Voters Summit was the sort of thing Romney’s whole campaign needs to do: be focused, build an actual argument, explain WHY conservative ideas are better.
Now comes definitive evidence that I was right.
On a national scale, 54 percent of registered voters viewed Romney’s comments unfavorably, while only 33 percent saw them in a favorable light, according to aWashington Post/ABC News poll released Wednesday. Fifty-seven percent of independents had a negative reaction.
This is the main reason why Romney is tanking in the polls all across the country, even as actual events and news provide what should be horrible omens for the Obama campaign.
On the other hand, Barack Obama’s way has been tried, and it failed. Just last week alone, its failures were shown in stark relief. Last Monday, the Congressional Budget Office confirmed yet another trillion-dollar deficit under Obama. On Tuesday, Moody’s threatened to downgrade the national government’s bond rating yet again, and the Kaiser Foundation showed that health insurance premiums rose last year to nearly $16,000 per family. On Wednesday, the Census Bureau reported that poverty, now afflicting 46.2 million Americans, is at a 50-year high. On Thursday, producer prices were reported to rise by the largest monthly amount in three years, and the weekly jobless claims rose to their highest levels since July; while on Friday, new numbersshowed that industrial production shrank by the largest amount in three years.
And, of course, gasoline prices now are almost precisely double what they were when Obama took office.
So…. WHAT SHOULD ROMNEY DO?!?!?
A not fully complete answer, but a good place to start, is this: It’s the culture, stupid.
At the Weekly Standard today, Frank Cannon and Jeffrey Bell make the case.
Bad as the economy was, Reagan showed no desire to restrict himself to that issue. He ran a full-bore insurgent campaign, critiquing Carter’s every vulnerability and calling for new conservative policies across the board.
Now comes news that the issue of abortion actually would cut seriously in Romney’s favor if he only would make the case.
“This survey shows that a few straightforward, specific facts about President Obama and abortion shock the collective conscience of swing voters in battleground states,” said pollster Kellyanne Conway. “His support for taxpayer-funded abortion, opposition to Born-Alive Infant protections and ‘intimidation through regulation’ foisted upon religious organizations draws the ire of between one-half and two-thirds of the voters surveyed,” she said.
This is exactly what I asserted yesterday in my blog post on the “Sleeper Issue”:
The SBA List has a moving video online featuring a beautiful woman who, as an infant, was the intended victim of an abortion, but survived.
It mentions Barack Obama’s sick, inhuman fight in Illinois against a version of the Infants Born Alive Protection Act, which would mandate assistance for such infants rather than a second attempt to kill them.
But abortion is far from the only possible avenue for Romney to gain ground. He should be:
1) opening a multi-front offensive against the Obama-Holder Justice Department, on issues ranging from a) Fast and Furious to b) race-based court fights to c) its work against voter ID to d) the Black Panther voter-intimidation case… and much more;
2) going full-bore against the Obama assault on religious freedom, not just with the HHS mandate, but with the Hosanna-Tabor case and others;
3) using the ObamaCare medical device tax as an issue to come down culturally as well as economically on the side of the actual consumers of health care and to undercut Obama’s reputation for compassion;
4) using the international assaults on our embassies not so much as a foreign policy debate but as a clarion call to the need to reassert national pride.
And that’s just a start. But it could be a powerful start. And time’s-a-wasting. Cultural issues (I haven’t even mentioned guns yet; that’s another good one!) do move voters. Without cultural issues (mainly gay marriage at the time, but also the battles over judges, which could be another good issue for this year too), George W. Bush would not have won in 2004. Without cultural issues (revolving door prisons in Massachusetts; Dukakis’ bloodless response to the idea of his wife being raped, etc.), the elder Bush might not have overcome a double-digit deficit in 1988. And so on. Cultural issues hit people viscerally. And polls show that conservatives are on the more popular side of almost all of the most salient cultural issues of the day.
Get with it, Romney team. The public may be somewhat ignorant (i.e., may not follow issues and thus may not know information that all of us activists know), but the public isn’t dumb. It can absorb economic arguments and ALSO take in cultural arguments at the same time.
Or does anyone not think that hunters in Ohio and Wisconsin and in the Blue Ridge in Virginia will fail to respond to effective reminders of how anti-2nd Amendment was the position of the Obama administration in the Heller case? Can anybody doubt that suburban moms won’t respond negatively to news that the Obama Education Department is moving to undermine school discipline by requiring a quota system for suspensions and expulsions rather than basing punishment on the actual incidence of violations?
It really is the culture, stupid.
Here’s a rather clear and direct ad blasting Barack Obama’s economic stewardship. If you have a young child, this might really hit home.
Singer Andy Williams passed away last night after a year long battle with bladder cancer. He was 84.
Williams rose to prominence in the mid-1950s as a regular on The Steve Allen Show. He had a string of hits throughout the late 1950s and early 1960s beginning with “Canadian Sunset” but would become best known for his rendition of the Johnny Mercer-Henry Mancini composition “Moon River” which was featured in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s starring Audrey Hepburn. Ironically, it was never released as a single. Another notable movie song on which Williams crooned was “Born Free”.
From 1962 to 1971, Williams hosted The Andy Williams Show on NBC. During the 1970s, Williams’ music became closely associated with Christmas with his annual Christmas specials and recorded numerous Christmas albums. His best known Christmas song was “It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”.
For the past two decades, Williams was based in Branson, Missouri where he built his own theatre. Williams was instrumental in broadening Branson’s appeal beyond country music.
Williams was a close friend of Robert F. Kennedy and was present when he was assassinated in 1968. He would sing “Battle Hymn of The Republic” at RFK’s funeral.
However, despite his support of RFK, Williams was conservative in his politics and vocally critical of President Obama. In September 2009, Williams said:
Don’t like him at all. I think he wants to create a socialist country. The people he associates with are very left-wing. One is registered as a Communist. Obama is following Marxist theory. He’s taken over the banks and the car industry. He wants the country to fail.
Should Williams have lived long enough to see Obama defeated I’m sure he would considered it the most wonderful time of the year.
Ronald Reagan put it best when he said, “Andy Williams, I think we’ll have to declare your voice a national treasure.”
Interview with Czech Foreign Minister: the West losing Central Asia to Russia (Foreign Policy)
American Airlines Versus It’s Own Union. Passengers stuck in the Middle (CNN)
World’s Largest Oil Trader ignores International Sanctions against Iran (NBC)
EPA controls Journalists’ Freedom to speak to EPA Scientists. (Politico)
Analysis: Are Polls Biased towards Obama? (Weekly Standard)
SATs at Lowest, Spending at Highest (Heritage)
On Monday the online realm of the mainstream media reported that a group of Scott Brown supporters and staffers made vile racist hand gestures and hurled racially-charged epithets at Elizabeth Warren supporters near the Eire Pub in Boston, Massachusetts. “Casual racism and sports collide in Massachusetts,” reported the Pulitzer Prize-winning publication the Huffington Post.
“Supporters of Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown are seen at a rally doing tomahawk chops and war whoops in an apparent attempt to mock Democrat Elizabeth Warren… The Brown supporters laugh as they mimic Native American war cries” reported Huffington, citing a video disseminated by a group linked to Warren’s campaign.
Clearly, if HuffPo’s word is to be taken at face value, it was yet another case of the drunken Irish-Catholics getting out of hand, inflicting their backward cultural views on the good, progressive people of Elizabeth Warren Nation. We all know that when booze and broads are involved, those Scott Brown supporters can turn any Boston political rally into a genuine race riot. Shameful behavior, but not exactly surprising considering their reading comprehension level (why are they still supporting Brown even after HuffPo reported on the first debate with the headline “The Professor and the Jock”? Don’t they know that a professor is better than a jock?)
But here’s a fact not mentioned by the Huffington Post or Rachel Weiner at the Washington Post: It was Scott Brown’s campaign event.
The Elizabeth Warren people ambushed it, angrily and methodically chanting “Warren! Warren! Warren!” sticking their signs in the faces of the Brown supporters, taunting and intimidating them in the hope that somebody on the Brown side would say something off-color that could be captured by the pro-Warren filmmakers infiltrating the rally.
The Warren people got their wish.
Confronted with a swarm of dead-eyed warriors right off the Daily Kos blogroll, a couple of Massachusetts guys in backwards baseball caps tried to lighten the mood. After trying out the chant “Yankees suck,” the pro-Brown guys started doing the Atlanta Braves tomahawk chop, smiles on their faces. It was a lighthearted reference to Professor Warren’s most publicized embarrassment.
They were not insulting Native Americans, the way Warren did when she co-opted their heritage on a job application or talked about their “high cheekbones” — actions that caused a good deal of pain in the Cherokee community. No. They were lampooning Warren’s actual relationship to Native American culture, pointing out that Professor Warren is about as much of a Native American as the Cleveland Indians mascot or any other shallow white mainstream appropriation of the American Indian people.
They were noting that on the list of important Native American events in this country’s history, Elizabeth Warren’s Senate campaign ranks somewhere alongside “Come And Get Your Love,” Ed Ames’ tomahawk throw on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, and Jane Fonda’s awkward participation in the Turner Field rally cry during the 1991 World Series. Elizabeth Warren, in a sense, is the Atlanta Braves tomahawk chop.
They were only mocking one Indian — the fake one.
Stop taking yourselves so seriously, the Brown guys were saying in a language imperceptible and unacceptable to the overeducated radicals confronting them. It’s a nice day outside. And, hey, it’s just a political race.
But the Warren people practice a different breed of politics — the politics of Occupy. The Warren people came armed with high-tech video cameras and a take-no-prisoners agenda. Within minutes, the pro-Warren activist organization BlueMassGroup was frantically tweeting their video to every mainstream media reporter in Washington.
For the Gen-Y liberal bloggers sitting in front of their Twitter feeds in our nation’s capital, it was like their non-denominational holiday of choice came early this year.
This video had it all! Racism! Quasi-violence! And, unlike at Zuccotti Park, this time it was the Republicans, not Warren’s students, ostensibly misbehaving.
Our friends at Buzzfeed and Talking Points Memo (etc., etc.) typed out their faux-outrage with unrestrained glee, their hyphenated last names and Ivy League headshots popping up across the blogosphere beneath sensational racially-charged headlines.
The Massachusetts sense of humor — the very thing holding together that proud, beautiful old state — was being assailed by a bunch of folks not only ignorant of the state’s unique culture but openly hostile to it.
And after the scandal had been created, promoted, and acknowledged by Senator Brown — “I’ll tell that (staffer) to never do it again” he said — the communications director of the Massachusetts Democratic Party, Kevin Franck, took a quick break from his righteous outrage to make clear on Twitter what had just transpired.
“Thanks for your help today,” Franck tweeted at Scott Brown’s Twitter supporters, who were defending their senator with humorous but not altogether Harvard-appropriate gusto. “Please keep doing what you do.”
The Yankees won.
My roomie Christopher and I saw Trouble With The Curve starring Clint Eastwood earlier this evening.
When I heard that Eastwood would be in another acting role, I was excited. I thought Gran Torino was going to be it. So I welcomed another chance to see him on the silver screen. Clint should have quit while he was ahead.
Trouble With The Curve had a lot of trouble with the plot which was clunkier than a baseball glove that hasn’t been broken in. You could see everything coming as if it were a straight fastball. The plot barely had any twist much less a curve.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s nice to see John Goodman get work again and the baseball trivia sections were cool. Amy Adams reciting the starting rotation of the 1971 Baltimore Orioles was downright sexy.
But as far as baseball movies go, give me Bang The Drum Slowly, The Natural or Field of Dreams.
All things considered, it was fitting that the theater had a lot of empty chairs in it.
The BBC had to apologize to Buckingham Palace for revealing that Queen Elizabeth II had lobbied the then Labour Government to arrest the Abu Hamza al-Masri, the notorious Islamic fundamentalist cleric who preached at the Finsbury Mosque in North London. Al-Masri was arrested by British authorities in 2004 and was subsequently on several charges concerning material support for terrorism and incitement. The U.S. has been seeking to extradite al-Masri to charge him with providing support to al Qaeda amongst other charges.
I understand royal protocol and all but this revelation requires no apology from the BBC nor should Buckingham Palace be embarrassed by it. I’m glad the Queen doesn’t like Islamic radicals who want to breach the peace and overthrow the government. If not for the Queen perhaps al-Masri would be still be at large.
So I say God Praise The Queen.
When my first article was published in the online edition of The American Spectator in January 2009, it was like being called up to the big leagues.
I had been writing at various conservative websites for nearly six years and after spending that time honing my craft, I was being given the opportunity to show what I could do.
After publishing a handful of articles in 2009, I became an “everyday player” in 2010 contributing with a weekly article and becoming a regular at The Spectacle Blog.
Even though I have never worked in Washington or on Wall Street, the good folks at The American Spectator thought I had something to contribute to the ongoing discussion about the past, future and present state of conservatism as well as about the past, present and future state of affairs in America and abroad.
Whether I’m writing about the follies of President Obama, the rise of the Tea Party, or the unwillingness of liberals to hold themselves to the lofty standards they set for conservatives, Spectator readers are quick to offer comments. Positive or negative, such exchanges mean people are reading what I am writing, and would not have been possible without the willingness of The American Spectator to provide exposure and light for my thoughts.
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The SBA List has a moving video online featuring a beautiful woman who, as an infant, was the intended victim of an abortion, but survived.
It mentions Barack Obama’s sick, inhuman fight in Illinois against a version of the Infants Born Alive Protection Act, which would mandate assistance for such infants rather than a second attempt to kill them.
As a reminder, here is the disgusting audio of Obama explaining his position.
Here are the words, with Obama describing what the horrible burden it would supposedly be on the original abortionist/doctor, “if that fetus, or child - however way you want to describe it - is now outside the mother’s womb and the doctor continues to think that its nonviable but there’s, lets say, movement or some indication that, in fact, they’re not just coming up limp and dead, they would then have to call a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure that this is not a live child that could be saved. Is that correct?”
How much more bloodless could Obama be?
Ramesh Ponnuru does a good job explaining this all, here.
This man, this president, is a walking,one-man death panel.
Twenty conservative leaders are calling the media on the carpet for rigging the election.
In the lead is Brent Bozell from the indefatigable Media Research Center. And the list of signers is memorable. Enough said. The letter speaks for itself and is reprinted in full below.
Movement to Media: “You are Rigging this Election”
Over 20 Conservative Leaders including Rush Limbaugh, Ed Meese,
Mark Levin and Tony Perkins
Call on Public to Tune out the Liberal Media!
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
This election year, so much of the broadcast networks, their cable counterparts, and the major establishment print media are out of control with a deliberate and unmistakable leftist agenda. To put it bluntly: you are rigging this election and taking sides in order to pre-determine the outcome. In the quarter century since the Media Research Center was established to document liberal media bias, there has never been a more brazen and complete attempt by the liberal so-called “news” media to decide the outcome of an election.
A free and balanced media are crucial to the health of this country. It is your duty as journalists – as outlined in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics – to “distinguish between advocacy and news reporting,” while simultaneously “seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues.”
There is a reason why the media are viewed with such disdain by the American public, as evidenced by every recent poll on the issue.
You have breached the public trust by willfully turning a blind eye to the government’s public policy failures, both domestic and foreign, while openly and shamefully smearing Gov. Mitt Romney. You are:
- Painting conservative ideas as extreme, while refusing to report the disastrous consequences of liberal programs enacted since 2008.
- Submerging the truly horrendous economic conditions America is facing and focusing only on minor political issues.
- Characterizing conservatives as cruel budget “slashers” instead of responsible officials trying to avoid a debt catastrophe.
- Focusing on alleged shortcomings in Romney’s business record instead of Obama’s record as the chief executive, whose policies contributed to a failed economy.
- Deliberately covering up embarrassing government failures and scandals, including the Solyndra debacle, Fast & Furious, and national security leaks which have put American lives in jeopardy.
- Pouncing on real and perceived missteps by conservatives, portraying them as bumbling incompetents, while suppressing embarrassing and incendiary remarks made by Vice President Joe Biden to prevent him from becoming a liability.
- Portraying conservative opposition to tax hikes as an impediment to deficit reduction while failing to highlight how liberal tax increase policies will cause massive damage to the economy and cause the deficit to explode.
- “Fact-checking” conservatives in order to discredit their arguments while regularly refusing to “fact-check” liberals who are distorting the truth.
We the undersigned – representing millions of Americans from our respective organizations – are now publicly urging our members to seek out alternative sources of political news in order to make an intelligent, well-informed decision on November 6.
It is time the American people turn you who are offending off, once and for all. You have betrayed their trust.
L. Brent Bozell, III
Media Research Center
My good friend Craig Silverman is many things: He’s a Jewish Denver attorney who used to be Chief Deputy District Attorney for Denver, he’s a former Democrat, and until recently he and Dan Caplis co-hosted one of the top radio shows in Colorado. Over the years, he has moved from being a moderate Democrat to being an Independent to temporarily registering as a Republican to participate in the caucus process before returning to Independent status.
And over the last few years, he has moved from being a supporter of Barack Obama to being vehemently opposed to him, and thus supporting Mitt Romney (even while not being extremely enthusiastic about Romney, a feeling shared by many, in large part due to Romney’s inability to market himself as well as someone with his character and background should be marketed.)
In an article for Breitbart.com, Craig lays out his views regarding Obama’s many failures. I find it a compelling argument, especially for those in the political center.
I encourage you all to read Craig’s note, and share it with anyone you think might be persuaded by Craig’s intense buyer’s remorse:
So, those who support Obama are either the intelligentsia/elite…or utter morons. (Or is that redundant?)
But seriously, how can we expect a better government than what we have if voters are so completely ignorant?
Today is the deadline for Todd Akin to exit the U.S. Senate race in Missouri. Obviously, he isn’t going to do so. If he doesn’t, and he then loses, he should never be allowed in polite company again. The country is more important than one man’s attempt at vindication for his own sheer stupidity, ignorance, and insensitivity. The question should not have been: Does he still have a chance to win and is it fair to ask him to leave the race because of one really really really really really really stupid remark? Instead, the question should have been, simply: Does he put at serious risk the chance for conservatives to pick up a crucial seat in the Senate? The obvious answer was and is “yes.” With that being the answer, the only honorable thing to do would have been for Akin to fall on his sword and worry about political vindication either later or in pursuit of another seat.
But most politicians these days aren’treally concerned about causes; they are concerned about themselves. Akin clearly falls into that category: It’s all about him.
Even if he somehow wins (which he won’t), he has proved himself to be a self-centered jackanapes.
Refs hand the edge to Seahawks in Close Game versus Packers (ABC)
Obama on Nuclear Iran: U.S. will “do what we must” (Reuters)
Inside story of Obama’s Arab Foreign Policy Naivete (NYT)
Chinese lose Rspect for American Businessmen in China (NYT)
International Shipping slowing down, becoming less Profitable (WSJ)
Eric Cantor struggles to protect Pentagon Budget (NRO)
Celebrities Governors Christie and Walker stomp the Presidential Campaign Trail (Politico)
The barbarians remain at the gates, still trying to restrict our rights to free speech. Well, no, we won’t be silenced — even if our own government denounces us. Hillary Clinton can go… uh, long walk, short pier, that sort of thing. And these Islamists can go eat pig. Stop murdering innocent people, and maybe they will earn some respect. Otherwise, let them look at the bottom of our shoes as we innocently sit with legs outstretched for comfort.
Here, by the way, is the key paragraph in the link above:
Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, secretary-general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), said the international community should “come out of hiding from behind the excuse of freedom of expression”, a reference to Western arguments against a universal blasphemy law that the OIC has sought for over a decade.
Hey, dude: We ain’t hiding behind freedom of expression; we are out front in celebrating that freedom, and we are gladly using that freedom in order to point out that there is no excuse for murdering innocents, and that Islamists who try to make excuses for such murders are deserving of nothing but contempt.
This news just broke my heart. Mary Foster was one of those old-school reporters who always got the story right, worked her tail off, and attacked both her job and her life as a great adventure. I adored her. She was a pro’s pro. Tough as nails, fun as a gaggle of monkeys with laughing gas, energetic as a Tasmanian devil on amphetamines.
I first met her in the summer after my freshman year at Georgetown University. She was hosting a nightly sports talk show on the radio, and I read in the paper that once a week for a month that summer she would allow somebody to “guest host” her show. I wrote in, saying that I was about to begin as Sports Editor of the Georgetown HOYA newspaper, that I was a lifelong Saints fan and sports fanatic overall, and that I would love to do her show. She picked me. It was the first time I had ever been on air. She lined up Butch van Breda Kolff, former coach of the New Orleans Jazz, the University of New Orleans Privateers, and the Los Angeles Lakers, for me to interview. It went great. She made me feel so at home, in every way. She kidded me on air as if she had known me all my life; she helped me handle all the transitions from one story to the next; and so on. She was terrific. Then, afterwards, she surprised me by taking me to dinner at Mr. B’s restaurant (a fantastic part of the extended family of Brennan’s family restaurants) with her and her producer — and then surprised me further by having legendary Times-Picayune/States-Item sports columnist Pete Finney join us! I idolized Finney!
Anyway, as I worked my way through the ranks of New Orleans journalism in subsequent years, I always loved running into Mary. And for years as I moved around the country, I loved seeing her byline on AP stories from New Orleans. She was indefatigable. One of a kind. And full of heart.
Wow. This is strong stuff. Well worth a watch, whatever you think of it, as an example of how free speech won’t be cowed.
Evidence comes from, of all people, Vernon Jarrett.
No wonder The One won’t release his college records….
Canadian record store mogul Sam Sniderman passed away yesterday at the age of 92.
Sniderman was better known as Sam The Record Man. He began by selling records out of his brother’s radio shop and eventually owned record stores across Canada including one in Thunder Bay. If you visited Toronto anytime between 1961 and 2007 and walked down Yonge Street you could not have avoided the large neon sign on top of his flagship store.
Unfortunately, Sam’s could not adapt to the digital age and he had to declare bankruptcy in the early 2000s. The Yonge Street store would reopen but closed for good in 2007. The building was sold to Ryerson University. It has since been torn down and a student center will eventually open in its place. There are plans to include the large Sam’s neon sign in the new building.
I frequented Sam’s on my many visits to Toronto over the years. My greatest memory of Sam The Record Man came in 2004 when I went in to buy a CD called Everything in 3 Parts by The Golden Dogs. The reason I remember this purchase so well is because my younger brother Micah played bass on this album. There’s nothing like buying a CD which contains the work of your immediate family.
I leave you with Sam The Record man commercial from the late 1980s featuring Sniderman and his signature phrase, “I said it. I did it.”
He most certainly did.
Scientists declare Animals are Conscious, deserve Special Treatment (New Scientist)
California may end Death Penalty to save on Expensive Appeals Process (CBS)
Obama on Truth of his Ads: “Mistakes are made” (WaPo)
… Super PAC Campaign Ads a Useless Waste of Money (WSJ)
A Poor Player that Struts and Frets his Hour upon the Stage: Gov. Jerry Brown (LA Times)
Jonah Goldberg: be Mad about the LIBOR Scandal (LA Times)
Ryan calls for American Leadership in Space (Weekly Standard)
Greenland loses traditional Fisheries to warming Water, gains Mining Opportunities (NYT)
The San Francisco Giants won their second NL West title in three years besting the San Diego Padres 8-4. It is the Giants sixth straight win and tenth win in their past eleven games.
The Giants managed to win the NL West despite the early season struggles of Tim Lincecum, the absence of closer Brian Wilson due to Tommy John surgery and the suspension of Melky Cabrera last month for PEDs.
I must admit I wasn’t optimistic about the Giants post-season prospects following Cabrera’s suspension but they actually played better without him in the lineup. The Giants are 25-10 since Cabrera’s suspension was announced on August 15th. On that date, the Giants and Dodgers were tied for first in the NL West. Today, the Giants won the division by 11 games over L.A. So much for adding a quarter of a billion to their payroll (though they still have a chance for a NL Wild Card berth).
A note about Cabrera. He will not win the 2012 NL batting title. Although Cabrera was two plate apperances short of winning the title, he would have been credited with two phantom plate appearances in which he would have gone 0 for 2. That still left Cabrera with a league leading .346 batting average. After the MLB Commissioner’s Office indicated they would not intervene, Cabrera made a formal request that he be made ineligible to win the title. MLB and the MLBPA agreed to make an amendment to the collective agreement to allow this to happen. So now the NL batting race is between Pittsburgh Pirates centerfielder Andrew McCutcheon who has a three point lead on Cabrera’s teammate Buster Posey (.336 to .333).
Cabrera is eligible to return from his suspension after five post-season games (assuming the Giants make it beyond the NLDS). I doubt this will happen despite Cabrera’s gesture.
But I do think Posey will likely win the NL MVP. The Giants were a mess after he broke his leg last season. Despite being 25, Posey is the undisputed leader of that team and given the roll their on could lead to their second World Series title in three seasons.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?