Season's Gratings - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Season’s Gratings

Re: Enemy Central’s Search and Restore:

Ah, these EOWs (Enemies of the Week) are so well done. This one was especially good. I’m not sure even EOY (Enemy of the Year) describes her well enough. I’ll say this about the Clintons, they seem to have energizer bunny stamina. Where, oh where is the wooden stake, the silver bullet, the bridge too far for them?

I’m so glad The American Spectator is back on the web in fine fettle. Merry Christmas, and best wishes for a Prosperous New Year from a big fan.
Jessica O’Connor
Bayonne, New Jersey

Hillary Rodham Clinton Rodham has had quite a year. Best selling fiction author, non-candidate for President, power broker for the Senate subversives, ambassador of bad will and now EOY. Well earned and deserved.
G.M. Strong
Media, Pennsylvania

Enemy Central replies: No jumping the gun, please. Ms. HRC was merely EOW in this year’s penultimate sweepstakes. Whether she goes on to win the big prize next week is as uncertain at this writing as whether she deigns to run for president next year or in 2008 or 20012 or 2016 or 2036 or 2136.

Re: Shawn Macomber’s Caroling With the Supremes:

‘Tis a shame only two of the Justices were present — I suspect some of their brethren were in the back, searching for some precedent which would bar the explicitly Christmas carols from the festivities.
Brad Bettin
Melbourne, Florida

Re: Patrick Hynes’s The Intolerant Left:

Patrick Hynes mentions that “Many liberals want to prohibit news organizations from getting too large, and Fox (actually News Corp) is really, really big.”

Actually, News Corp isn’t all that big in relation to the other news players. According to an interesting article in the Atlantic, “The Age of Murdoch” by James Fallows, in 2002:

• News Corp had revenues of $17 billion.
• Viacom (CBS) $25 billion.
• Disney (ABC) $26 billion.
• Time Warner (CNN) $42 billion, and
• General Electric (NBC) $131 billion.

This makes one wonder why Fox would be the target of Dean’s ire, well it would if one believed that the size of the media outlet was the real issue.
Mark Hessey
Belmar, New Jersey

“The Intolerant Left” article by Patrick Hynes points out some very disturbing trends. The left wing in America will stop at nothing to regain power. Slowly but surely they are whittling away at our rights. Kudos to you for pointing out their efforts to silence dissent. Our ability to speak our minds, even when our views may be unpopular, is what America is all about. Keep up the good work!
Gil Humphreys

Re: George Neumayr’s Vatican Shuffler and Vincent Chiarello’s letter (“Souls on Trial”) in Reader Mail’s The Big Tease:

My one-line response to Mr. Neumayr’s fine piece was going to be: “George Neumayr for Ambassador to the Holy See!”

But Mr. Chiarello beat me to the punch with his tale of direct experience in Rome.

I’ll be interested in hearing Cardinal Martino’s thoughts on the complicity of the nominally Catholic Tariq Aziz in Hussein’s regime of terror — not.

What a buffoon.
Mark Stoffel
Arlington, Virginia

Mr. Neumayr correctly takes Cardinal Martino to task over his comments. However, generalization to the Catholic Church as a whole is too extreme. Cardinal Martino was not speaking for John Paul II, who knows a thing or two about fighting tyranny. He was not promulgating any policy or theology. It was his stupid, ill-informed opinion. The Church is a big tent. When Mother Teresa took Bill and Hillary to the woodshed over abortion (in a politically incorrect, public speech), I don’t think TAS readers were howling with disgust. Nobody except the left thought she should have shut up. You get the agreeable and disagreeable from the same source. Notably better than the Democrats, who are always disagreeable.

A common misconception is that the Roman Catholic Church is some kind of corporation where everything is vetted through the PR department. This is just plain wrong. Freedom of (a well-informed) conscience is not optional, but required.

The problem with having a biblically inspired social policy (e.g., just war) is that there are always ad hoc positions that are good for maybe a decade or two — not a good way to manage over 2,000 years.

As for the raving leftists in the Vatican — Christ said to love all of them.
Kevin Crosby
Concord, Ohio

Bravo to George Neumayr for his remarks about Cardinal Renato Martino. Unfortunately Cardinal Martino has decided that his role is to vent visceral anti-Americanism rather than thoughtfully offer teaching on how the teachings of the Church affect the problem of a nation defending itself from terrorism or the moral duties of nations when they are confronted with a butcher like Hussein.
Rev. Leonard F. Villa, Pastor
St. Eugene’s Church
Yonkers, New York

Re: Paul Beston’s Economics Among the Boxes:

Let me try to lighten the load on your heart for the temporary workers for your moving company. During my last move, also in Michigan, the foreman boasted about his ability to earn $60,000 a year as an employee of the moving company, based on his performance. His two workers, also employees, earned around $10 per hour .

The foreman and one of his laborers worked at feverish pace, knowing that at the end of the day they could make a legitimate request for a tip (which I gladly paid). I soon replaced the other, less capable, worker knowing that I was paying them by the hour. So, in the moving business, it seems that if the temporary workers pass muster, even marginally, they can hope to later earn much more as employees of the company. The only thing that weighed on my heart that day was the likelihood that the less capable worker would receive as much of the tip as the competent worker.

When I was in college thirty years ago, I had labor jobs like the men described in the article. What made me different from the men I worked with was my awareness that life had a lot more to offer. Both of my parents had college degrees and I knew the value of one. So I worked to go to school. They respected this, but it was also foreign to them. To them, school was a nasty experience not to be repeated. The prosperity that I enjoy today is, of course, a result of my education. I probably have never worked harder than those guys, but I chose a path with greater reward. So how do we convince that type of man to pursue an education?
Mike Bergsma

Re: David Hogberg’s Paranoia at the Des Moines Register:

David Hogberg wrote that the loony left’s writings are “a bunch of unpatriotic, self-indulgent, pea-brained schlock.”

But their real attitudes shine through in his quoting of Rob Borsellino’s piece: “Back in the summer, a friend admitted that she was actually taking comfort from the terrible news coming out of Iraq and Afghanistan. She’d hear about explosions, ambushes, the killing of U.N. officials, pro-American Iraqis, innocent children, and she was saddened by the deaths. But ultimately she thought it was a good thing. She’d thought that enough bloodshed and disaster would create a movement in this country, a demand to get our people home and save some lives. Maybe enough death would wake folks up to the fact that we have no business running around the globe killing people.”

Why don’t these left-wing idiots ever create “movements” to demand an end to the over 16,000 homicides in the United States every year? (Are all cities in a quagmire? Should the police just give up and go home?) Or the 45,000 or more deaths on our highways each year (maybe we should ban all vehicles)? And what about the 38,000 that die each year from the flu?

To whine about the cost of fighting terrorism around the globe, while always regrettable, is ridiculous given those combat deaths to this day number less than 500. And those brave men and women died to even allow the pea-brained to spew forth their venom.

God Bless America!
Greg Barnard
Franklin, Tennessee

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