Tag Archives: OTM

When Heroes Disappoint

Among the steadily dwindling justifications for paying a cable bill remains Fox News’s Journal Editorial Report. The weekly half hour commentary features the brightest political minds. With faces and personalities meant for print, the brain power of this bunch carries the show. Lead by Paul Gigot, but with a brain after-burner in Kim Strassel, this is a political enthusiast’s best TV program. With such high regard, last week’s program was the let-down of the year.

Dan Henninger starts with a misunderstanding of the Lance Armstrong affair. Henninger opined that Armstrong’s cheating was a “miss” of note for 2013. Maybe he did not have the air time to explain, but Armstrong’s cheating was so commonplace, nobody can cite a racer of any prestige who did not also cheat. Indeed, every rider who came in second to Armstrong in his Tours De France wins was also a doper, so the titles have been left vacant. Armstrong’s cheating was more common than not among top cyclists, so the real miss is to the system. In a Road to Serfdom parallel, the system was so corrupt that the rise of an Armstrong was inevitable; indeed, he now claims that the cycling authorities colluded in his doping. Armstrong’s real crimes were his ruining peers and friends with slander in order to keep his cheating empire alive. Such ruthless cruelty is bread by a system without ethics.

The Wall Street Journal is not a sports rag, so Henninger’s fumble (get it?) is of no consequence. Rather, their ringleader, Gigot, revealed that his Potomac tenure had finally softened his mind. Gigot’s “miss” of the year was the GOP-lead partial government shutdown. Citing the harm it did to the GOP brand, he slammed the poor strategy behind the effort.

Well, no. First, the shutdown did not affect any of the necessary functions of government. All of government’s big and visible programs remained in force – the military, Social Security, and Medicare. Hardly anybody outside of Washington would have known the government was shut down, which is probably why Pres. Obama unnecessarily barricaded memorials and shuttered web sites. Statists of all parties predicted a recession and rising unemployment, but nothing much happened at all. Indeed the sequester and shutdown coincided with a slight improvement in the economy’s recovery. The Washington bubble is so insular, no real person even noticed that the EPA was on vacation.

True, GOP generic polling was taking a hit during the shutdown. However, chasing polls is what lead the party to nominate a buffoon like Sen. McCain or a damp rag like Gov. Romney. The pollsters said Gov. Reagan could never beat Pres. Carter as well. Chasing polls is chasing the lowest common denominator, and that game is already mastered by the Dems who are enabled by the Old Media.

How sad that Gigot fell into the swamp-think of populism vs. leadership. No wonder Stephen Moore was not on to rebut Gigot’s premise. Moore, an anti-Keynesian might have argued that the shutdown improved the economy and was a service to the nation. He might have pointed out that all the doomsday rhetoric surrounding the shutdown remains unsubstantiated.

Does Gigot think the latest capitulation on the sequester is also good politics? When the GOP look like Dems, as they did under Pres. Bush, the GOP gets rolled. The editorial media’s job is to explain issues and frame them in the context of principle. Gigot failed in this duty with his continued bashing of those who consider Washington as an enemy of liberty and prosperity. You are forgiven, Mr. Gigot, but please get with the program.

How I Judge

The other day, as I was about to walk the dog, I must have forgotten something, so I tied the dog up outside for a moment. A few days later, one of the typical neighborhood busybodies asked me why I was tying my dog up outside. Living in extreme-left Downtown Denver, I really do not care about their opinions – I could just as well strap the dog to the top of my car. However, it does remind me that people are judging me all the time and over anything. Perhaps Jesus’s commandment not to judge is trickier than I had thought. Anyway, here is how I judge my neighbors – maybe I should meditate on lightening up.

I judge those who give bums cash. I find it shockingly selfish to give a bum cash. The majority of them are drunks or some other sort of addict, so the money just goes straight to their habits. None of them are homeless for lack of money – they are homeless for inability to accept the immense generosity of people who would help them. Giving cash to bums only enables them to hurt themselves and my neighborhood. These softies are really giving money to their misguided sense of guilt in exchange for a quick fix of ill-deserved self-esteem.

I judge those who think it is OK to force the young to subsidize the old. Obamacare is the latest example of stealing from the young to give to the old. It is now illegal to buy health coverage based on one’s own needs and risk profile (i.e. age group). It is illegal to take care of one’s self and one’s family. It is illegal to be responsible for one’s traditional responsibilities. Those who think everyone should take care of everyone else (or face fines or prison), have a moral deficiency. When they are able, most families exist to help their young prepare and succeed. How telling that the government largely exists to steal from the young to give to the old (in the form of Social Security, Medicare, and Obamacare)

I judge public sector union leaders and their minions who think they earn their ridiculously cushy lives. They are thieves who appropriate more earnings than their private sector equivalents command while working lazy hours with no fear of layoffs. They give a portion of their earnings to politicians who then grant them more earnings to then give to politicians. This is not a matter of policy; it is common graft.

I judge hypocrites who live off the work of people like Gov. Romney. To be sure, Romney had a good start in life, but he also worked tremendously hard to turn a privileged upbringing into amazing wealth for himself and thousands others. I never supported Romney, but when politicians who never created a dollar in their lives criticize him for doing what every business must – lay off workers to save companies, invest where the profit is, and make the unpopular decisions – my head spins. When politicians like Pres. Obama who got their money largely by influence peddling claim businessmen like Romney did not earn their money, I can hardly stand it. Politicians who live off the fat of the economy should thank the Romneys prostrate for enabling their soft-handed mealy-mouth lives. There is a clear moral hierarchy, and populist politicians generally fall at the bottom.

I judge educators who shove nonsense and debt onto students who really need to learn a trade, and I judge the politicians who lie to young people and say everyone should go to college. I judge the Old Media that still clings to a wisp of credibility with the people while lying to their faces. I judge Hollywood leftist phonies who nag regular people into choices they never have to make themselves. I probably judge too much, but it is worth asking how the leftists that surround me judge back – probably harshly and in ways I can not imagine.

Why Does The Old Media Protect Islam?

The Boston terror attack allows one easy conclusion – the Old Media is not afraid to jump the gun on its reporting. The AP could have checked its facts before incorrectly reporting that a bomber was in custody last week; a simple phone call to the police or FBI would have cleared up any confusion. Probably in a race against its competition, the OM did not check its facts and endangered Bostonians who may have thought the threat was over. Other news sources ran the AP’s error, but with a caveat that they could not confirm its accuracy. The OM is quick on the trigger, but not in implicating Islam.

NPR this week fell over itself to avoid implicating Islam in this terror bombing. Even after the suspects were known to be Muslim, NPR constantly guarded itself by reminding listeners there was no reason to believe radical Islam was at work. As it turned out, the terrorists fit the classic mold. They were rich and well educated, as are most Islamic terrorists, including the 9/11 hijackers. They fell under the influence of a radical Imam with connections to terrorist organizations (in this case the Muslim Brotherhood). One of them travelled abroad for terrorist training. While a pathetic writer for Salon may have wished for a white right-wing terrorist, the Tsarnaevs were more of the same from western civilization’s persistent enemy. Even today, the New York Times is clinging to the notion the Tsarnaevs acted alone, as if young men spontaneously build bombs out of pressure cookers and conceal them in trash cans.

The OM reported falsehoods that it could have easily checked, but it did not report that every sign pointed toward radical Islam. The OM does not want to offend Muslims, especially the ones who behead reporters, but also it does not want to engender bias in the public against Islam. The OM is protecting the public from itself through such circumspection. The OM knows that the streets of Jakarta are filled with Muslims who want to lead peaceful lives and raise their nation from poverty. The vast majority of Muslims are without doubt peaceful, but even so, millions of them want to kill Americans indiscriminately.

The OM should ask itself why it wants to protect Islam’s image. The OM is filled with progressives who embrace dismantling the establishment to build a better world. Islam is anti-progressive; it is a set of laws that can never be changed or broken down. Contrary to its position on Islam, the OM hates Christian faiths and goes out of its way to report every Christian’s failures. NPR, for example, reported that Olympic bomber Eric Rudolph was a “Christian Identity extremist,” but in fact he is agnostic. NPR, however will not call the Ft. Hood terrorist, Nidal Malik Hasan, an Islamic terrorist or extremist even though he is one beyond doubt.

The OM should also know that reporters are the first people rounded up by totalitarians. The Sean Penns and Oliver Stones of the world will also find their sympathy for radicals poorly rewarded. Terrorist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood probably have little tolerance for their purported allies like Lewis Farrakhan. These useful idiots should stop running flack for the very people who would imprison them.

The story of Boston is that Islam has a problem. Imams with terrorist ties such as Boston’s Basyouny Nehela are a serious threat. The OM does a disservice to public safety by failing to expose these radicals, but it is also failing Islam. Islam needs more reasons to purge Imams who would radicalize young men and make them terrorists. As long as the OM deludes the public into thinking radical Islam is not a problem and the Tsarnaevs are aberrations, the attacks will continue.