Tuesday, October 21, 2014

You Didn't Build That!

Slate's John Swansburg tells the Ceeb Jian Ghomeshi that all that "self-made man" stuff is a pernicious myth that has done far more harm than good. (A message that's muy simpatico in Ceeb corridors, since its default setting, too, is hard leftist and it therefore loves to see people dependent on big government.)

Opera Buff Phylis Chesler Repulsed By the Met's Latest Production, Parts of Which Remind Her of Nazi Propaganda

She writes that the opera's libretto
 is not even-handed. The villains have more lines.
For example, the terrorists command 11 arias — 12, with the “Chorus of Exiled Palestinians.” The Klinghoffers have two arias each, toward the end of the opera; add the exiled Jewish chorus and you have five arias for the innocent victims versus 12 for their victimizers. 
And better lines: The Palestinians sing: “My father’s house was razed / in nineteen forty-eight / when the Israelis passed / Over our street.” 
The Jews sing: “When I paid off the taxi, I had no money left.” 
Indeed, the obsession with Jews and money is reminiscent of Nazi propaganda. The terrorist Rambo sings: “But wherever poor men / Are gathered they can / Find Jews getting fat . . . America / Is one big Jew.” 
Pretty catchy, no? As is the Met's advertising slogan ("See it. Then decide") As is Zionhass in general. But wait--it gets worse:
Leon Klinghoffer had suffered several strokes. He lacked full use of his hands, his legs were paralyzed, his speech slurred — and this is whom Molqui murders and throws overboard with his wheelchair. 
Only a dead and murdered Jew — “Leon Klinghoffer’s body” — is allowed to sing his death with some measure of grace (although most of the lyrics are incomprehensible).
"Leon Klinghoffer's body" sings? Along with being grotesque, that is seriously messed up.

Klavan Flays Friedman

Well, somebody had to:
Thomas Friedman wishes the U.S. could be “China for a day,” so we could “authorize the right solutions,” without all that congress and debate and voter business getting in the way. Friedman is also the guy who felt Barack Obama was “leading on national security,” in 2012, which would be after the president withdrew our forces from Iraq. He also wondered aloud whether Obama ”is the most pro-Israel president in history or just one of the most.” Friedman graduated summa cum laude from Brandeis and got an M.Phil from Oxford and — read his columns — he’s an idiot.
Speaking of idiots who admire China's authoritarianism...hello, Justin T.!

Palestinian Zionhass, By the Book

Here are some titles that the PA flogged at this year's Frankfurt book fair, Europe's largest event of its kind:
  • “The Zionist Deception Dictionary.” A book based on the notorious “Protocols of the Elders of Zion.” The “Protocols” have long been a favorite of Palestinian propagandists. 
  • “Jewish Terms: Beware of Them!” Another so-called reference volume. An example of a Jewish term of which the reader should beware: The “myth” of the “Nazi Crematoria.” 
  • “Jews Converted to Islam by the Prophet,” by Muhamad Ala Batir. A kind of ‘success stories’ volume. 
  • “The Buraq Wall,” by Jehad J. Al Ayesh. An entire book devoted to arguing that Jews have no connection or claim to the Western Wall in Jerusalem. “Worshipping at the Wall is a new heresy [propagated by] the religion of the Jews,” the book declares (p.31). The author rants about “Jewish subversion” (p. 31), “Jewish aggressions to Judaize the Wall” (p. 37), and the like. Not surprisingly, it concludes that “the Buraq Wall is the property of Muslims” and must be under exclusive Muslim control (p. 40). 
  • A booklet called “The Jewish Plot to Establish a Temple to Judaize Jerusalem.” Standard Palestinian conspiracy-mongering.
  • They're obviously out of their minds and in no condition to run their very own state, much less negotiate a deal that would lead to one.

    Has the Photo of Justin Trudeau on the Cover of His "Memoirs" Been Retouched To Make Him Look Older?

    I find it interesting that the photo chosen for the cover of Justin Trudeau's memoirs shows him with something we've never seen before--a face marked by crow's feet and a furrowed brow. No doubt that's an attempt to make the perennially youthful-looking Justin appear more aged and seasoned--and therefore old enough to be up the task of becoming prime minister.

    I wonder: are these wrinkles for real, or have some been purposely--and purposefully--added to create the impression that Justin is older and wiser than he really is?

    Update: The photo of Justin you see here is far more flattering. One learns from Ezva Levant (via BCF) that his memoirs were text-massaged by the NatPo's Jonathan Kay, who seems to have fallen for Trudeau in a big way. Fortunately, the Post's Chris Selley isn't swooning. In a comment piece today (I can't find it online so I'm quoting from my paper paper), Selley writes about the gentle questioning Justin underwent when bookstore empress Heather Reisman interviewed him before an adoring throng at Indigo's Manulife Centre location:
    Off the cuff, however, on perhaps less-practiced subjects, [Justin] seems considerably less assured. The tones and the cadences are mostly right. He's a gifted speaker, no question. But his tone gets showier, more theatrical, the vaguer he gets. Words show up unwelcome and unannounced. And he has a knack for composing smart-sounding clips that carry the stench of nonsense: "We are actually putting together an election platform as a vision for how to properly govern this country," he told Ms. Reisman, who didn't ask what the vision is.
    The "vision," in its entirety, is: I'm the prime minister and Stephen Harper is history.

    Needs a little work, I think, but for more than a few it'll be more than enough.

    Zero, Nada, Rien, Bupkes

    What, pace John Kerry and his Kerryettes, the failure to arrive at a "two state solution" has to do with the rise of ISIS.
    Kerry's Kerryettes, Jen and Marie. (Can't hardly wait for their
    TV Christmas special; I hear their harmonized version of
    "Winter Wonderland" is killer).

    Sudden Jihad Syndrome Takes Hold of Ahmad LeConverti (Ahmad the Converted), Who Mows Down Two Infidel Canadian Soldiers With His Car

    The cops shot him, so it's virgin time for the late Ahmad (who pre-reversion was known as plain old Martin Rouleau). Had he lived, though, I can see police handing him a copy of that RCMP-endorsed anti-radicalization manual, can't you?

    Update: One of the soldiers hit by Ahmad has died.

    Dear NatPo: Time to Retire the Pre-9/11 Photo of Mark Steyn You Always Use and Take a New One

    Another delicious dispatch from the culture wars--excerpted from Mark Steyn's newly-launched book--shows up today, this time in the National Post. The book may be new, but the photo featured in paper paper's double spread is of Steyn circa--oh, I dunno--say, 1997?, at the height of his Seth Rogan-esque bushy-bearded Jew-fro days.

    C'mon, NatPo editors. Can't you find--or, better yet, take--a photo of the man that's at least from this decade, if not this millennium?

    Update: While hunting down the photo of "Seth" Steyn, I came across this--an interview from 2007. Thought I'd post this bit because the first line of his response (which I've italicized) jibes with my own p.o.v.:
    BC: Personally, I think your strongest attribute as a writer is your sense of humor but was there ever a time when it proved a detriment? Did editors ever criticize you for not being “serious enough”? 
    Mark Steyn: Well I think there’s a tendency in this country to separate funny stuff from serious stuff and that’s a mistake. You might say that’s the secret behind the decline of the American newspaper as they put serious stuff in one section of the paper and funny stuff over in the corner by the bar code. If you’re funny then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be funny in regards to war, jihad, death, and disease. That’s the main difference between us and the enemy we’re facing. They’re not what you’d call a barrel of laughs. Ayatollah Khomeini said that there is no humor in Islam and he lived a life to prove it.  
    An Imam in Afghanistan clarified the Taliban’s position on music; he said that people weren’t allowed to listen and weren’t allowed to enjoy it. These guys make for hilarious enemies. No, humor is an important and vital weapon. It makes people understand that we simply cannot allow ourselves to lose this fight. Furthermore, humor clarifies positions wonderfully. The one thing that spoke well of Julius Nyerere is that he kept a copy of Evelyn Waugh’s Black Mischief on his nightstand, but what’s tragic is that if he read the novel it made no impression on him as his actions show that he never really understood it.
    "Born with the gift of laughter and a sense that the world was mad"--Steyn was; Waugh was; me, too.

    Monday, October 20, 2014

    Who Is That Toy For, Exactly?

    Just in time for Christmas, Toys-R-Us will be carrying a Breaking Bad meth-making action figure.

    Where did you go G.I. Joe? A nation turns its lonely eyes to you...

    Quel Shockeroo--Mark Steyn Isn't the First Conservative Writer Whose Book Has Been Trashed on Amazon By Drive-By Basher "Hello Jimmy!"

    In the run up to his book launch, Mark Steyn posted the, erm, appreciative words of someone who calls himself "Hello Jimmy!," a name that sounds much friendlier than his comments read. Apropos Steyn's latest, H.J.! says,
    I've read many of the pieces contained in this collection before. It's the same old claptrap and pablum that excites the loins of the conservative lemmings in this country--the kind of fact-free red meat for right-wingers to which they can pleasure themselves. (The irony that this collection opens with a story about Viagra is not lost upon me.)

    Of course, since this is a book of previous writings, Mark Steyn literally (you know...that word that Sean Hannity literally loves to say???) has nothing new to contribute. It's all been written, said, and done before--and then repeated ad nauseam on right-wing radio and Fox Newz. And since it's all intellectually, logically, and factually flawed, it's been rendered useless to rational humans.

    Of course, that won't stop the right-wingers from buying this book. When P.T. Barnum made his most famous quote, he seriously underestimated the birthrate in this country. And what's that one about the hasty parting between fools and their money???
    Hilariously, H.J.'s rant has so far elicited 43 beg-to-differ comments as compared to the one or two who have commented on the other reviews, which are all pro-Steyn. And perhaps most amusingly, Steyn fan Jeff Theismann addresses H.J.! directly:
    Hello Jimmy. I hope you get the help you need. You have now completed 20 Amazon reviews. Of those 20, an amazing 19 of those were of books written by conservatives; you afforded each of these books 1 star (even the ones not even released yet!). The only other being a review of the "Old Dutch 16-Ounce Solid Copper Hammered Moscow Mule Mug" which you praised with 5 stars. For such a voracious reader, who seems to dislike all books written by conservatives it is amazing that you have never written a review for a book written by a liberal. Some have suggested that you are making up your reviews as none of them are listed as "verified purchase" except for the mug that you love. However, if you did indeed read all those books, please be aware that subjecting yourself to only things that you don't like (hate?) is symptomatic of a mental health disorder. As I said earlier, I hope you get the help you need.
    I doubt he will. He's obviously having way too much fun composing his little write ups. Which rather begs the question: why does he have so much (too much) time on his hands? Is he retired? On sick leave? Unemployed/unemployable?
    Cuter and more erudite
    than Hello Jimmy!? For sure.

    Mark and Craig Kielburger Want Canadian Kids to Feel Guilty About Eating Ice Cream

    Call 'em the Grinches of ice cream, 'cuz they know how to take one of life's little pleasures--one which can loom larger when you live in a country where winter is long and summer is brief--and turn it into an opportunity for preachy uplift.

    In an effort to dispel their guilting, I'm going to serve myself a scoop of Kawartha Dairy's Death By Chocolate in a sugar cone as I hum this song from a classic Canadian musical.
    I'm digging in--guilt-free.