NAIL ON THE HEAD
Re: Judah Friedman’s Palinism’s Threat to Feminism:
Thank you! You nailed it! I am so amazed at the wonderful writing that this campaign has inspired, yours being at the top of the list! Isn’t it grand to get people stirred up!
Thank you so much for this well thought out article. My opinion is that is truly the reason for much of the hatred shown Governor Palin. I’m emailing it to my friends.
Wow, you hit the nail on the head with this article; it’s exactly what I felt and why these left-wing women are so upset.
It exposes them for who they really are: a bunch of cackling birds bitching and moaning.
This is what gives women a bad name and makes people think “we are all alike.”
Now I see the truth, we aren’t all alike, we just needed someone to appear that is MORE like we really, are which is a strong, confident, able sex that can actually have it all and not bitch!
Thank you so much for this article.
— Joni Ramm
This article written by Judah Friedman is heroic. He has described what I believe most women will understand about Sarah Palin. It is true that she has some different points of view but women who have the approachable nature that she appears to have will open themselves up to debate and can change their points of view. It’s well known that women will talk for hours to understand an issue. That’s why Oprah is so popular.
The feminist movement during my day had an underlying theme that despised male dominance in decision-making in world affairs and on the home front. Now most of that type of confrontation has disappeared and women are more willing to engage with men as an equal. Men have also been willing to listen.
In Hollywood and the Feminist movement perhaps Sarah reminds then of the projected image of a character they aspired to and since they could not embrace that image it is frightening to them because they understand the characteristics that give women power and Sarah has all those characteristics and then has seamlessly moved into a space dominated by men.
— Christine K.
In light of Mr. Friedman’s take on Sarah Palin and L.A.’s hysterical feminists, I call attention to the agony of Ms. Michelle Cottle, a senior editor at the New Republic, a journal of ethereal political conviction. In an article published a few weeks ago, Cottle burst forth this way:
Of course, these days, the feminist mantle is claimed by pro-life conservatives and pro-choice progressives alike. Palin herself is a proud member of Feminists for Life. Feminism seems no longer to denote a particular set of values or ideological agenda; it is merely a label appropriated to proclaim that one is committed to the best interests of women — whatever one believes those to be. Thus far, there’s no reason to doubt that Palin devoutly believes her hard-core conservatism is right for women. A McCain-Palin White House, however, would spell only trouble for women’s rights. [Italics added, with great delight.]
Such bluster is the sweetest aspect of Palin’s presence in the race. It pours forth, day after day, from people on the verge of hysteria. They know that within the public’s response to Palin lies an easy rejection of the left’s chronic dishonesty. Feminism is to them merely one shade of a lipstick applied to their ideal porcin, which labors to establish a vaguely socialist, vaguely anarchist, entirely incoherent dystopia. It’s refreshing to hear them fess up to it, day after day.
All power to the Palin! Write on!
— Edmund Dantes
SHOT IN THE FOOT
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.’s The Taranto Principle:
Franklin Roosevelt was a governor, and Al Capone was a community organizer.
— Steve Spaay
Years ago in college, I had a course (can’t remember the name) where the professor was particularly particular about presentations. While it was an engineering course, the professor insisted we present our results in a briefing format before the entire class.
After the first round of presentations, the professor gave us all a failing grade. Confused, we asked why and he let us know that he graded each of us on the number of “uhs” and “ahs” produced during the presentations. Basically, he started each of us off with 100% and then started subtracting. I won’t reveal my depressing score on this first presentation; too damn close to negative territory.
His advice to “fix” the problem was interesting and very difficult to implement: just shut up. He told us that using these filler noises made it sound stupid, so rather than “ah” our way past a sticky point, just be silent. It was, by far, the most difficult thing I have ever learned.
Today, I find myself cringing every time I have to listen to a briefing or presentation with “ah” and “uh” cluster-bombing throughout. It can take a generally good briefing and send it completely down the hole. I’ve seen it so bad that it affects decision makers. Why support a project or recommendation that “sounds stupid” because it appears the presenter isn’t even comfortable with what’s presented?
There’s nothing much left to say about a presidential candidate who also cluster-bombs “ahs” and “uhs.” He hasn’t learned to be silent so he’s stuck on sounding stupid.
— Karl F. Auerbach
Excellent article…apropos the Kennedys, I remember my grandfather saying years ago that he would feel a lot better about the Kennedy’s naked political ambition if just ONE of them had run for county sheriff somewhere along the line instead of going straight for the top jobs in the country…seems like he was prescient in that respect.
— Robbins Mitchell
I loved this observation which calls the entire concept of a “free press” into question.
For a number of years I have followed the American military concept of Information Warfare and its constituent parts, one of which is called Perception Management. (Crudely put elsewhere this is referred to as “Spin”.) The idea is to use all means of information to convince people you are right and your opponent is wrong.
Over these years I have come up with four simple but effective rules for Perception Management:
1. Never let the other guy swing first.
If you let your opponent pick the topics and start out with even a blatant lie, you wind up playing catch-up ball and if he crafted his approach well you may never get public trust or support for your point, even if you are correct and honest. This is obvious when you get some of the really egregious claims in the media (such as anything in the New York Times) and do not get them quashed fast enough. Right now the Daily Kosites are pushing the hoary old “Keating Five” things which are a typical dodge to get suspicion off the guilty.
2. When something goes wrong. be the first to take advantage of it.
This has been all too obvious lately when McCain says something which is not far wrong but “indignant” reporters and Obama take it up first and declare he is “out of touch with America.” His comments on the economy basically being sound but being made to seem like he has a “nothing to see here, folks” attitude are a good example of how this works, as it makes him look like a doddering fool even though the claimants are playing very loose with the facts.
3. Find a good “Buzz Word” and use it until it becomes part of the general lexicon of the day.
Most objective thinking people know that Socialism has not worked and will never work, so instead of using the term “Socialism we can believe in” which is a non-starter the concept morphs to “Change we can believe in” and is run out every chance they get, until Obama “owns” the word change and any other attempts to use the word are virtually meaningless.
4. Aim for the heart, not the head.
I learned early on in high school that some debating techniques may stymie your opponent, but will not faze a good judge who will can you for using them. Alas, these still work well in the court of Perception Management and are all too easy to employ. Cries of “Racism!” or “McCarthyism” are two of the worst and most frequently used by both Obama and the press to drum out any objective measures to counter their foolish proposals or lack of actual investigation into either the man, his background, or his mentors.
The Socialists masquerading as Democrats (oops, “Progressives”) and their media allies know these four rules by heart. Too bad they want to only use them on the American people and not our opponents or (perish the though!) our actual enemies.
— Cookie Sewell
Socialist Republic of Maryland
(New State Motto: Vote for Slots or Else)
I want to protest in the strongest terms Mr. Tyrrell’s use of the phrase “an idiot comedy show” to describe Saturday Night Live. To accuse SNL of being a “comedy” is typical of the mean-spirited talk we’ve come to expect from conservatives. Remember, Johnny Carson once said that someday they would actually do a comedy version of SNL, so I want an apology from Mr. Tyrrell right now, or else I’ll have to continue to read his essays.
— C. V. Crisler
Your Mr. R. Emmett Tyrrell lucidly explains this Taranto principle. The fact is this principle is not strong enough. One wonders how that empty blowhard Kerry got more than the lunatic vote; how that sleazy trial lawyer Edwards was ever considered by any number of votes over the lunatic fringe; how that empty suit Abu Hussein, risen from the revolutionary swamps of corrupt Chicago politics, got to win the socialist nomination; and how those bloviating socialist gasbags Biden, Frank, and Dodd get re-elected again and again ad infinitum? What should one do to reinforce this Taranto principle?
— Marc Jeric
WHAT’S FOR DESSERT?
Re: Jeffrey Lord’s Dining With Evil:
I was gratified to see that the Roman Catholic Church was not listed as a participant in this sad charade. Furthermore, Pope Benedict rebuffed Ahmadinejad when he was visiting Rome and requested an audience, earlier this year.
It seems that among the Christian denominations, The Roman Catholic Church has the Islamofascists pegged, as she ought. She has fought them since the Crusades and recognizes her ancient enemy.
Perhaps Mr. Lord might consider crossing the Tiber.
— Catalina Caesar
It is an amazing phenomenon, that Sarah Palin would be excoriated and slandered, even demonized, for her Evangelical religious affiliation, while Obama, affiliated with the UCC that Mr. Lord describes here, that abets terrorist tyrants, would receive no scrutiny at all for that UCC affiliation.
It appears to me that America has ceased to be good. In fact, it would appear that in this circumstance, America has ceased to be sane.
— Kent J. Lyon
What does it say of Mr. Lord if he continues his association with this group? I hesitate to call it a church as that word denotes a sympathetic relationship with Christ which, it seems, the UCC can no longer claim.
— Rose Storey
Jeffrey Lord replies:
The short answer for Ms. Storey is that the UCC has no top-down authority structure. Individual churches, as was the habit of Congregationalists right from the beginning, speak for themselves. My individual church in placid Central Pennsylvania is about as far from these kinds of antics as you can imagine. And indeed, my own recent election to a position on the Penn Central Conference Board of Directors is a direct reflection that there was a feeling the national UCC was not reflecting the diversity — in this case the presence of lots of conservatives — in the denomination. We are here. We will stay. And we will be heard.
Re: Quin Hillyer’s No Thanky to Paulson and Bernanke:
You make too much sense. It will never happen…
Mr. Hillyer’s comments on the bailout proposal remind me that even conservatives residing in the dream world of D.C. don’t have a clue about the way markets work. We have a very simple, yet very real, problem right now in this country. Credit markets are not working. I have a business Mr. Hillyer, and I can tell you that credit is a very important thing indeed. People need financing to buy stuff, and right now financing is very difficult. I have paid very high taxes in the past, and may very well pay high taxes in the future, but tax rates have nothing to do with the current crisis. If people can’t borrow to start businesses, buy big ticket items, etc., taxes are very much beside the point. My advice for Mr. Hillyer is to go back to your room with your Thomas Sowell book, and let the big boys handle this matter. Someone can wake you when it’s over, and then we can go back to worrying about high corporate tax rates.
— Jason Davis
Quin Hillyer replies:
Where, pray tell, did Mr. Davis get the idea that I have belittled the size of the problem or underestimated the need for credit? He must not have read my piece very closely. I specifically said that we need to address the credit problem, but that Reps. Hensarling, Ryan, perhaps McCotter, and others have better ideas than the Paulson plan. As for taxes: They do matter. If NET profits rise because 35% of them aren’t taken away by the tax man, then that 35% becomes available for capital investment, etc., which helps grease the stuck credit wheels throughout the economy. Also, a company with profits 35% higher is a company more likely for lenders to be willing to lend to. And so on.
Quin, no argument over the thrust of your suggestion but there is as much chance of this Congress or any other for that matter dropping corporate income taxation as there is having Government employees not pay income tax. Ask yourself why do people who get paid taxpayer money derived from income taxes, etc have to pay income taxes on what is essentially money already taxed? In effect the cost of government is 30% higher than needed in salaries because of this practice.
It’s all part of the same scam that says corporations pay taxes when in fact they don’t with rare exception. If you stop taxing corporations and reduce government salaries by say 30% across the board and exempt them from paying income taxes you accomplish the same thing. Think about it. The whole purpose of the income tax system is the redistribution of wealth from those who produce the most to those who produce the least (or nothing as it is in more and more cases). As soon as you drop the farce that is tax fairness via the idea that corporations pay income tax then the whole argument about who really pays all taxes is laid bare for all to see. The income tax system, Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid all serve the same overall purpose in controlling what the general population does with their lives and labor. You are asking the most corrupt institution on the planet to give up part of its control in order to do the right thing for individual Americans. We’ll have to revisit 1776 I think to accomplish that.
You are also asking the institution that created this current mess trying to fix what it saw as a problem in the past to fix this also. This current mess (fix to a previous mess) has already cost me an extra month and a half equivalent mortgage payment a year in property taxes and insurance cost on imputed values that have doubled in the last five years. That’s 348 gallons of gas for me at current prices or 10 months driving to put that in perspective. Local city/county governments just love this. They are rolling in tax money they didn’t have to vote on to raise taxes on. Like all those tens of billions in elevated salaries for government employees that have to be raised so that said employees can pay income taxes on income taxes essentially, we are not going to fix this until we fix our government.
Somewhere between the late 1970s and today we kind of threw out the guidebook on what the true function of government is. It is my honest assessment that we have gone too far down the socialist path to compromise/fix our way out of this. Federal and State government unfunded mandates as structured today from starting back in the 1930s are going bury this Nation starting in less than ten years. We can’t just grow our way out of this with inflated money or tax everything that moves three times over as the Democrats propose. There is a fundamental problem here that will take more than a “maverick” to fix. There is going to have to be a serious house cleaning in Congress and reforms from A to Z regarding what the purpose of Government is and is not. Words have got to mean things again in the Halls of Congress and for a start I would require that each member of Congress read the Constitution as a start. I also think this phrase “do no harm” as a guiding principle is OBE. Accountability and Responsibility can’t be legislated out of existence as some would like.
— Thom Bateman
Once again, America totters near the precipice. What further proof could be desired of the disaster that is the (insert disliked political system here) system? Only the (insert desired political system here) system can save us.
— David Govett
AT LEAST IT’S NOT EUROPE
Re: Bret Joshpe’s The U.S. Global Insurance Company:
It’s a tempting idea asking the Europeans to help out with the Wall Street mess, but the ugly secret they are too embarrassed to talk about is their problems make Wall Street’s look like mere bagatelles. Lehman Bros collapsed with a leverage ratio of 35:1, compared to a ratio in commercial banks like Wells Fargo of around 10 or 12:1. Deutschebank has a leverage ratio of 50:1 and its liabilities amount to about 80 per cent of the whole German economy. If Hank Paulson is having sleepless nights, his counterparts in Berlin are having nightmares. If any cavalry come riding to the rescue, it’s a safe bet they won’t be eating sauerkraut and sausages. None of the other Europeans is in much better shape. America is on its own, but what else is new, and the good news is you don’t need to suck up and waste time with a pack of useless allies.
— Christopher Holland
“Last week, the U.S. acted boldly once again with the Federal Reserve Bank loaning $85 billion to AIG and putting the risk of default on the U.S. taxpayer.” Boldly? Not the best word for the Fed’s action. Recklessly, fecklessly, scandalously and most probably, unconstitutionally. Boldness implies an understanding and acceptance that dire consequences may occur but the risk is worthy of the possible sacrifice. Gambling with money that is not their own, the Fed saved AIG shareholders and placed all the risk at the feet of tax payers who derive no direct benefit from AIG. Please, lets save our praise for those who earn it or it becomes a howling idiot wind that drown out sensible discourse.
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York
THINK BEFORE YOU WRITE
Re: Lib’s letter (under “Who Are You to Say”) in Reader Mail’s Easily Understood:
As much as I would have strained to detoxify letters from such as “Lib” in the past, now I restrain myself because I have learned it is a useless exercise. I have asked liberals many times in the past if they actually listen to themselves talk.
While denouncing the purported hatred, vitriol, and narrow-mindedness of the right, they spit out indignation and outrage in unmistakable colors of hate. While lecturing all of us about “Constitution, cooperation, and valuing peaceful community,” they show that they have little use for anyone much different from themselves. They like pluralism until they actually have to face people they dislike and don’t want to understand. A “peaceful community” only can exist on a liberal’s terms. To have such a “community”, somebody has to change and, as far as they are concerned, it sure isn’t them.
Ironically, liberals are imperialistic. There can’t be any institution where they don’t belong and once in control they will make sure no one different will have a position of any consequence. In the name of diversity, many must be excluded. Conservatives, although significant part of the population, are by definition are unsuitable.
Why, when conservative views are presented and defended, do they act as if it were a personal insult?
But how to explain all this intolerance and anger? Why do they accuse others of the very attitudes and behaviors they themselves engage? Hatred? Projection? Can it really be that simple or is it something deeper?
Whatever it may be, Liberals clearly believe they are nothing of the kind. But do they ever actually listen to themselves talk?
— Mike Dooley
Re: Jeffrey Lord’s When Will Biden Pony Up?:
Last Friday, after Sen. Biden opined that it’s patriotic for the rich to pay more taxes, I “growled” at the Arlington County Taxpayers Association website, citing Judge Learned Hand, reportedly America’s most quoted jurist, who said “there is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes.”
In addition, I noted the opinion of the National Taxpayers Union’s Kristina Rasmussen who said, “If your patriotism is measured by how much you pay, I would argue that the wealthy are pretty gosh darn patriotic.”
Rather than teach a constitutional law seminar in his evening hours, Sen. Biden should spend some time reading tax law.
— Timothy Wise
President, Arlington County (Virginia) Taxpayers Association