TIGERS WILL BE TIGERS
Re: Reid Collins’ Tiger, Tiger, Burning Bright:
… and the same goes for bears. Timothy Treadwell, the famous bear photographer / author / enthusiast, and his girlfriend were killed by a brown bear in Alaska. He lived among the bears and got absurdly close to them unarmed. He in effect was saying that the bear’s life was more important than his own. Too bad he forgot the verity that man is a special creation of God and more valuable to Him than wildlife. Too bad that his ignorance sacrificed his girlfriend’s life and, of course, the bear died anyway. What a waste.
— Richard Anderson
WHERE THERE’S SMOKE
Re: Reader Mail’s Neumayr and the Groper:
Lots of carping, complaining and otherwise on Mr. Neumayr’s position regarding California’s new Governor-elect. I enjoy seeing the rich diversity of opinion. Personally I too would have been unable to cast my vote for (R)nold. I still live with a stupid vote over 30 years ago providing me with David Obey’s representation. I do, however, understand how it became (R)nold’s race and not McClintock’s. So many people just don’t feel their vote actually matters and even if (R)nold was a less than perfect (indeed) Republican, he was clearly, very clearly, the lesser of the evils presented. Sometimes voters just gotta do what they think they gotta do.
— Roger Ross
George Neumayr writes: “It would be more honest if they just dropped the charade and admitted to raw power politics, à la Mr. Webster, instead of trying to browbeat conservatives not on board into believing that the election of a gang-banging Hollywood groper is a meaningful victory over Clinton Democrats.”
Attempted browbeating aside (is that a felony or a misdemeanor?), Mr. Neumayr appears willing to accept the verdict of a defunct skin magazine and a tired old newspaper as to the guilt of the “gang-banging Hollywood groper.” Many of us simply believe there is a clear difference in the evidence underlying allegations against the Terminator and the Internimator. This argument is in a terminal loop. Ultimately, as they say, it is a matter for the jury. It does not mean we are “Carvillian sophists” for expressing logical differences of opinion about the definition of credible evidence.
In any event, it most certainly would have been a victory for Clinton if Arnold had not won, because he was the only non-Democrat who had a chance. And a loss for Clinton has inherent value of its own, especially if one believes as I do that Arnold is a far better man.
— Robert Martins
Re: David Hogberg’s Scoundrel Slime:
This concerns the article “Scoundrel Slime.” In the article, Hogberg claims that Krugman’s definition of patriotism, “whether you are willing to take risks and make sacrifices, including political sacrifices, for the sake of your country,” supports the fact that Bush is a patriot, saying that Bush is benefiting our country with the war and his sacrifice is his loss in American approval. I disagree. I believe that by the definition, Bush is not a patriot; he is sacrificing our country for the sake of his own little whims and grudges about Iraq. This war on Iraq has not been for the good of our country, but has only succeeded in killing over 300 American soldiers, far more than would have been killed by the “WMD threat” if we hadn’t touched Iraq soil. Hogberg also claims the war is succeeding at its goal, of liberating Iraq. If I recall, the initial purpose of the war was to root out WMD. You conservatives need to get your facts straight and evidences straight. No “shooting first and verifying later.” Conservatives are not patriots.
— Stephen Powelson
Mr. Hogberg’s on the political climate bears watching. Not by the pundits, analysts and reporters. The class of people who need to take note are the politicos. No state as heavily Democratic as California would turn out a Democratic sitting governor unless there were fundamental issues underlying the change:
1) Rank and file Americans have had it with the pandering. Politicians and newspaper editors should take note.
2) Voters are onto the class warfare gambit. The voters are understanding there are problems that need to be solved as Americans not as some class.
3) Voters are also getting wise to the triangulation of NGO’s and their affect on average Americans opportunities. The defeat of California infrastructure initiative is a case in point.
I wish Californians well and hope their new governor can pull off greatest budget turnaround in history.
— John McGinnis
REAPING WHAT BILL SOWED
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell’s The Politics of Groping:
I continue to be amazed at the sheer hypocrisy of the liberal media and Democrats when it comes to sexual harassment. It was truly sad to hear the voices of all these supposedly “outraged” people commenting on the sexual harassment charges against Schwarzenegger. These are the same people who drove Bob Packwood from the U.S. Senate, attempted to derail Clarence Thomas, yet turned such a blind eye to Bill Clinton.
When the charges against Clinton first surfaced, especially Juanita Broaddrick’s charge of rape, I warned my liberal Democratic friends that they faced a decisive moment in American politics. They could speak out and demand Clinton’s ouster, or they could effectively condone his behavior, thus “lowering the bar” for acceptable standards of behavior from our politicians in the future. They all chose to remain silent — from U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer to the average liberal Democrat in the street. Their inaction proved one thing to me: they were truly not the least bit interested in sexual harassment, unless it could be used as a political tool against their enemies.
To hear any of these supposedly “concerned” people express outrage now is so sad. Obviously they’ve all forgotten the adage about reaping what one sows. Clinton was their field, now Schwarzenegger is their new crop.
— Mart Martin
San Francisco, CA
Re: Jeremy Lott’s Seismic Politics:
Jeremy is missing the most basic point — Arnold is not a “political Hack.” He doesn’t care about “re-election,” which is all that 99% of the others care about. This guy is different, and this may be the reason he will accomplish something.
— Ron Peterson
Re: Heather Roscoe’s Kids These Days:
I have not followed this Washington state episode, but I used to live in Pittsburgh, where this was fairly common. And when we say “strike” in Western PA, we are not talking about sissy, peaceful “informative” pickets. I have seen “teachers” actually beat on kid’s cars who mistakenly crossed The Line. (That will surely gain their respect.)
But, there was an interesting wrinkle in all this: Coaches were considered Staff, not teachers. So not only were the athletes allowed to train at school, but the football schedule went on, unabated.
Why? “It was for the kids.” How could the jocks have a chance at “higher education” unless the college scouts could see them play?
So, screw the nerds. Let the games begin!
I don’t know the culture in the Northwest, but I would be interested in knowing if there were any similarities.
— Norm Woodward
Warner Robins, GA
NOT SO FAST
Re: Kathy Shaidle’s Changing Her Religion:
“[Irshad Manji] ticks off her faith’s shortcomings, then continues: ‘Is that a heart attack you’re having? Make it fast. Because if we don’t speak out against the imperialists within Islam, these guys will walk away with the show. And their path leads to a dead end of more vitriol, more violence, more poverty, more exclusion.'”
I am supposed to have a heart attack at a “famous Muslim lesbian feminist” smearing traditional Islam? That’s about as surprising as a “famous Catholic lesbian feminist” smearing traditional Catholicism. In fact this quote is almost word for word the same type of thing as “daring,” “rebellious,” “dissenting” Catholics say every day about their religion to the roaring cheers of the media. And yes, such people often get a lot of support from “Catholics.”
I agree we need to defeat Al Qaeda. I want to see Iraq and the rest of the Middle East establish full fledged democracies under the rule of law, with women having equality with men. And then I want to see the female presidents of Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan break into gales of roaring laughter at the idea that their long struggle was all so that “famous Muslim lesbian feminists” could import such all important artifacts of Western culture as the industrial scale massacre of unborn infants, i.e. “enlightenment.” Maybe that can’t happen, I don’t know. But the way things are going, the Middle East on its way up is going to meet the West on the way down. By the time they are enlightened enough to realize you shouldn’t kill people of other religions, we will be so enlightened we will realize that you don’t really need a reason to kill anyone whose continued existence you find inconvenient, if you can get away with it. Won’t that be fun?
— R.J. Kozela
Re: Clifton Briner’s letter (“Leading Rushers”) in Reader Mail’s Blind Loyalties:
First, see the letters about blind loyalty regarding the California recall election. Blind loyalty to Mr. Limbaugh is touching but not always the most effective.
In war, a good general does not order his troops to fix bayonets and a charge against the strongest point in the enemy’s line. The Japanese repeatedly used this tactic in WWII. Hint: they lost. Instead one probes, sends out recon, plans and finally assaults the weakest link.
Sometimes one even finds it most effective to mount a guerrilla campaign such as the North Vietnamese did. Hint: They prevailed in the conflict in Nam in the long run.
Sometimes a military man comes along that is quite good at his trade. As a reward, he keeps getting promoted. Eventually he makes flag rank and finally gets his fourth star. By this time, no one has told him anything but “Yes Sir” in quite a long time. He comes to accept that his judgment is almost automatically brilliant and right–always. Finally he does indeed order that infantry charge against the enemy’s strongest point.
Also in times of war, it is axiomatic that one should not unduly aggravate the neutrals. FDR went out of his way to observe this rule with the Swiss and Argentines and Spanish and in each case our war efforts benefited greatly in the long run. In Mr. Limbaugh’s case politics, the news shows, his radio show, etc. are the front lines. Sports shows are in the neutral area. During the Civil War, at the Battle of Fredericksburg, both sides observed a truce to retrieve their dead and wounded. After the respite they went back to killing each other. Sports shows are, or should be, that respite.
If you wish to see Mr. Limbaugh continually charge against a brick wall without a helmet, so be it. His concussions don’t seem to hurt you do they? I prefer to walk a few paces to right or left and open the unlocked door and confront the enemy on his ground, at his weak point.
As you continue to blindly cheer on Mr. Limbaugh, just remember that the cheerleaders are not really in the game, they stand on the sidelines out of harm’s way.
— Ken Shreve