Category Archives: Politics and Culture

Part XLIX A night approach, the world awaits

Oh, I’m ready to land, am I? the wingman thought grimly. I guess I’d better be. Anyway, ready or not, here I come.

“311 flight break-up now,” a new speaker, the smoothly cool voice of an air traffic control petty officer, “These will be vectors for a Mode II approach, turn left heading 175 for downwind, descend and maintain angels one-point-two.”

“311 roger, left to 175, angels one-point-two.”

“311, approach, final bearing 005, Gold Eagle altimeter two-niner-niner-five.”

“Copy two-niner-niner-five,” too quickly, it was all happening too quickly, the JG thought, scrambling to catch back up on his penetration and approach checklists, feeling the cockpit start to press in on him again.

His lead’s voice on the aux radio now, cheerily, “Lead’s detaching. See you on deck.” Everyone’s trying to buck me up, the wingman thought. Wish I could be as optimistic as he’s pretending to be.

“See you on deck, skipper,” the JG replied, trying to sound confident, mentally adding, “I hope.”

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Cliff Hanger

Posted By lex, on March 4th, 2012

Vlad Putin “wins” the “election” in Russia:

Vladimir Putin and his supporters are celebrating victory in Russian elections, that will give him a third presidential term after spending the last four years as the country’s PM.

With nearly all the ballots counted, he secured nearly 64% of the vote, election officials say.

Mr Putin told supporters in Moscow he had won in an open and honest battle.

But opposition groups claim widespread fraud, and plan a protest rally in Moscow later on Monday.

The independent election watchdog Golos says Mr Putin won just over 50% – far less than the official figure given by the election commission.

It says it received numerous reports of “carousel” voting – in which voters cast multiple ballots.

Credit where it’s due, Mr. Putin ran a great campaign. And the security services.

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Whittle on Breitbart

Posted By lex, on March 5th, 2012

Worth watching, if you haven’t already seen it.

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21st Century Politics

Posted By lex, on February 26th, 2012

President Barack Obama was elected to be the leader of the free world based on little more accomplishment than a pair of autobiographies.

Now, attention spans being what they are, he apparently intends to win re-election based on a 30-minute infomercial, directed by Al Gore’s “Inconvenient Truth” propagandist.

The sad thing is, it may even work.

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Class Warfare

Posted by lex, on January 11th, 2012

The rhetoric is working, comrades!

The Occupy Wall Street movement no longer occupies Wall Street, but the issue of class conflict has captured a growing share of the national consciousness. A new Pew Research Center survey of 2,048 adults finds that about two-thirds of the public (66%) believes there are “very strong” or “strong” conflicts between the rich and the poor—an increase of 19 percentage points since 2009.

Not only have perceptions of class conflict grown more prevalent; so, too, has the belief that these disputes are intense. According to the new survey, three-in-ten Americans (30%) say there are “very strong conflicts” between poor people and rich people. That is double the proportion that offered a similar view in July 2009 and the largest share expressing this opinion since the question was first asked in 1987.

For a little more about class conflict, please see this Wikipedia article.

Part of a series on Communism.

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Solyndra Update

Posted By lex, on December 26th, 2011

Partisans may have long suspected that the Solyndra fiasco had much more to do with politics than policy, but when the Washington Post piles on in concurrence, the goose is fairly cooked:

Meant to create jobs and cut reliance on foreign oil, Obama’s green-technology program was infused with politics at every level, The Washington Post found in an analysis of thousands of memos, company records and internal ­e-mails. Political considerations were raised repeatedly by company investors, Energy Department bureaucrats and White House officials.

The records, some previously unreported, show that when warned that financial disaster might lie ahead, the administration remained steadfast in its support for Solyndra

They show that as Solyndra tottered, officials discussed the political fallout from its troubles, the “optics” in Washington and the impact that the company’s failure could have on the president’s prospects for a second term. Rarely, if ever, was there discussion of the impact that Solyndra’s collapse would have on laid-off workers or on the development of clean-energy technology.

Well, those are just little people and little things.

It’s the power that counts. Political power, that is.

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There First

Posted By lex, on December 26th, 2011

Theodore Dalrymple wrote what might as well be a companion piece to VDH’s “Vandal” post below, but citing instead the case of last year’s riots in the UK:

It is true that the British police have come to resemble not the force of uniformed citizens of which Sir Robert Peel (the founder of the modern police) dreamed, but a paramilitary occupier, feared mainly by the innocent and law-abiding. The police have become simultaneously bullying and ineffectual, the worst of all combinations, barking rudely at motorists who stop where they shouldn’t but disregarding manifestations of serious criminality entirely. The reasons for the degeneration of British policing are (again) complex, but one of them is the extreme leniency of the courts. For a long time, the police had little incentive to pursue criminals short of murderers, for the courts will impose a trivial punishment on them.

There’s a lot more where that came from. And sadly, likely to be a lot more like that in the coming years.

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“Honor”

Posted By lex, on November 15th, 2011

It means different things in different places, I suppose:

The day before a Montreal man was charged with killing his three daughters and his first wife, he was caught on a wiretap saying that even if he is hoisted onto the gallows, nothing is more important than his honour.

“They betrayed kindness. They betrayed Islam. They betrayed our religion and creed. They betrayed our tradition. They betrayed everything,” Mohammad Shafia, 58, is heard telling his wife, Tooba Mohammad Yahya, 41, in the conversation recorded by police.

Shafia, Yahya and their eldest son, Hamed Mohammad Shafia, 20, are each charged with four counts of first-degree murder.

Three teenage Shafia sisters, Zainab, 19, Sahar, 17, and Geeti, 13, along with Rona Amir Mohammad, 50, were found dead inside a car submerged in the Rideau Canal in June 2009.

The girls were thought to have boyfriends.

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Defense to Perjury

Posted By lex, on October 4th, 2011

If House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa gets their way – the latter uncowed by rather ridiculous mainstream media smears – US Attorney General Eric Holder will soon find out whether the codicil “probably” is sufficient to defend himself on the charge of lying to Congress:

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The Ministerial Exception

Posted by lex, on October 5th, 2011

The constitution of the People’s Republic of China guarantees its citizens religious freedom. In practice, the Communist Party of China is loathe to permit its faithful to practice according to their consciences, restricting it to government-sanctioned organizations where it does not, as in the case of the Falun Gong, suppress it entirely. The PRC has even crossed swords with the Vatican, insisting that Chinese bishopry be appointed by the state rather than Rome, and requiring Catholics to place loyalty to the state above their conscience and renounce the primacy of the pope, an essential Catholic doctrine that puts them at odds with the broader Roman communion.

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