Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Terminators: The Rise of the Extremes

Steve Janke at Angry in the Great White North has two posts which illustrate a process Americans are all too familiar with. After the Canadian Conservatives won at the elections Janke was watching the post-election speech of Jack Layton of the left of center NDP and this is what Janke saw:

Listening to Jack Layton's speech, I witnessed what I thought was the low point of the night, and it made me nervous. Jack Layton of the NDP thanked each of his opponents in turn: Gilles Duceppe of the Bloc Quebecois, Paul Martin of the Liberals, and of course, Stephen Harper of the Conservatives. But while the mention of names of Duceppe and Martin were met with polite applause, a chorus of boos greeted Stephen Harper. Jack Layton didn't miss a beat, or scold his supporters, but carried on with a congratulatory message.

I worry that in Canada, the potential exists for what has happened in the US -- the fight between the Left and the Right will become intensely personal, at least for the Left. George W Bush is hated on a very personal level by Americans who have never met the man. Is Stephen Harper in for the same sort of treatment, hated for committing the crime of being a conservative?

Later Janke quoted some of the reaction in the left of center Canadian blogosphere to the Conservative victory.

Lets poke a stick at the neocons, turn over rocks, force the wingnuts into the open, expose their rabid face, and force them to eat each other. But right now, lets just flame the media. These lazy, mediocre, right-wing bastards let Harper get away with his dishonest stealth campaign. Let him fool a lot of Canadians. Almost cost us our country. Lets make sure they can never do that again. It’s payback time.

As for gays and lesbians and their friends, our war begins today. Lets make this Harperian interlude a mere blip in Canadian history. Before we smash them once and for all.


In a certain mental universe the poll victory of Stephen Harper is not one particular outcome in a long series of elections, a process in which sometimes you lose, sometimes you win. It's the northern equivalent of the US Presidential election of 2000. Those who think along those lines do not simply want to win the next election but demonize the enemy and smash them; just as some want to end the reign of Halliburton and BushChimpHitler and establish a progressive hegemony forever.

While this mentality is confined to a few, this minority by its militance often sets the agenda. Marc Cooper, hardly a right wing person, has a long article on how Pacifica Radio set about marginalizing itself. He writes as a person trying to warn a major left-wing institution not to continue its headlong rush off a cliff fully realizing that his good intentions will only be repaid with vilification.

Everything in me screams to NOT  write this posting. It’s just not worth the pain such endeavors normally evoke. When I’ve done it before, I’ve been slandered, muddied, slashed, booed down, accused of everything short of being Jack Abramoff’s secret lover.  I’ve even been accused of having a hand in the death of  Chilean President Salvador Allende, who I had the privilege of working for before the 1973 coup. But here goes, anyway. I can’t help myself: ...

The five-station, listener-sponsored, half-billion dollar Pacifica Radio network has just named a new executive director. Predictable enough that the new guy, Greg Guma, comes straight out of the pwogwessive bubble of Burlington. But what catches the eye is how Guma – who will now oversee the five stations—has written with enthusiasm about truly off-kilter conspiracy theorists like David Ray Griffin who argue that 9/11 was NOT caused by the four Al Qaeda—commandeered planes. Instead, Guma asks us to take seriously the proposition that the attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon were the product of a Reichstag-like plot engineered by the Bush Administration.

To be frank, for those of us who actually pay some attention to this matter, the selection of a non-credible fringie like Guma is hardly a surprise. Pacifica has been in accelerating decline for two decades – especially in the last five years ... I don’t think anyone would or should care very much about any of this, if it were not for the gross squandering of an historic opportunity. Started by Bay Area pacifists, anarchists and liberals in 1949, Pacifica eventually opened stations in L.A., New York, Washington D.C. and Houston. Are you ready for this? The estimated value of those frequencies today – that is to say the market value of the five Pacifica stations operating today—is conservatively estimated to be $300-$500 million. You read that right. A half-billion dollars? Do you know of any other institution on the American Left that can compare in value?

Cooper goes on go describe the surreal infighting within Pacifica Radio.

Its air is filled with shrill, clumsy and dogmatic denunciations of “fascism.” Any trace of high culture, meanwhile, has been ruthlessly rooted out and expunged. The program schedule is divvied up among self-appointed “community leaders” and paid staff who – for the most part—could never dream of earning a paycheck from any other media entity in the world. What paid and volunteer programmers have in common is a death-grip on their personal slice of air time. Try to take it away and you became the target of a virulent campaign accusing you of being a sexist, racist, and corporatist nazi.

The process that Janke observed starting in Canada is already far along with the Kos-ification of the Democratic Party and the culture wars which show no sign of abating, only increasing in virulence. Though things may begin innocently enough with a declaration of war on BushChimpHitler the process of confrontation and radicalization inevitably leads to a rejection of the very idea of compromise, civility and respect which really underpins the democratic process. Politics becomes an arms race to see who can find the most extremist position. Nor is the phenomenon confined solely to the Left. It has been observed that opponents in the end come to resemble each other and conservatives also start to take intransigent positions.

Zombietime (hat tip: Little Green Footballs) has a photoessay of an anti-abortion march and the counterdemonstration which met it in San Francisco. It's a visual metaphor, I think, for the kind of Calvary that Canadian Conservatives may now be forced to endure. Go visit the link and ask yourself: where will the process end? How ugly will everyone be at the finish?


Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

I blame it all on the cult of Steve Jobs.

1/25/2006 02:50:00 AM  
Blogger whit said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1/25/2006 03:55:00 AM  
Blogger whit said...

Many will dislike him for simply being a Conservative but I suspect that Harper is fairly close to the center and will not strongly provoke the leftists who will maintain a strong hand in any coalition.

The Culture of Death is primarily a youth rebellion intermixed with a few old fools.

The big question is is this madness a pathological pandemic infecting the left? How severe is it? How extreme are the fringes? How willing are the anarchists to act? Are we entering an era when the answers to these questions will be revealed?

1/25/2006 04:09:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...


Recall that Joseph Lieberman is now the target of the Kos and Marc Cooper himself knows what's coming for simply talking about Pacifica. Harper, as you say, is certainly no right-wing ideologue, but when was that a defense?

My own sense is that one's political position is ultimately irrelevant when dealing with extremists. What really struck me about accounts of the Great Purges and the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was how old Bolsheviks or Long Marchers were instantly transformed into "wreckers" or "capitalist roaders" by thugs with absolutely no moral authority to speak of. Extremism in its decadent phase is a form of 'top this' daremaking. After a while it becomes a race to the bottom.

Consider Christopher Hitchens vs George Galloway. Hitchens is the accomplished Marxist; schooled in the literature, a Trotskyite, a long time supporter of the Left in Kurdistan. He's been in the field. Then look at Galloway. By any logical standard any reasonably Marxist would consider Galloway unqualified to shine Hitchens' shoes. But guess who is regarded as the acolyte of BushChimpHitler? Hitchens of course.

What's always interested me was the way in which these insane leftist witch-hunts happen. It's a mob thing. Once it gets started, the irrational is to be expected; then a fake Indian like Ward Churchill can insult or hound to death with impunity a real Indian and still be Mr. Left. Go figure.

1/25/2006 04:24:00 AM  
Blogger Shep Barbash said...

Lincoln, responding to a victory serenade in Washington, DC on Nov. 10, 1864, said: "The strife of the election is but human-nature practically applied to the facts of the case. What has occurred in this case, must ever recur in similar cases. Human-nature will not change. In any future great national trial, compared with the men of this, we shall havae as weak, and as strong; as silly and as wise; as bad and good. Let us, therefore, study the incidents of this, as philosophy to learn wisdom from, and none of them as wrongs to be revenged."

1/25/2006 04:43:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

In the article:
But what catches the eye is how Guma – who will now oversee the five stations—has written with enthusiasm about truly off-kilter conspiracy theorists like David Ray Griffin who argue that 9/11 was NOT caused by the four Al Qaeda—commandeered planes. Instead, Guma asks us to take seriously the proposition that the attack on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon were the product of a Reichstag-like plot engineered by the Bush Administration.

Guma does have a bit of a point. Consider that if 9/11 had not happened, the West would have continued to sleep while the quiet demographic changes transformed Europe and the US to where it would be beyond anyone's ability to change in 10 years.

Instead, we have Afghanistan's Taliban overthrown, Sadaam in a cell, and US troops on Iran's border. Judging from the results, Osama could just as well have been a double-agent for the Mossad based on the the net outcome of his actions.

Regarding the increasing hysteria of the Left, I expect them to go more and more nuts as the viability of their goals recedes further and further

1/25/2006 05:00:00 AM  
Blogger Jamie said...

A bit of a point indeed... Good thing for the sane of the world that the insane keep acting crazy.

1/25/2006 05:20:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

What a laugh, the pic of the "anarchist" looking near tears, complaining to the cop about the pro-lifers "Who do they think they are, showing up here?"

Reminded me of the anarchists in "The Big Lebowski", who lost the ransom money they were trying to extort, and complained "That's not fair!"

The Lincoln quote is a gem, reminding us that we might as well learn to live with the fools, because there'll always be fools.

1/25/2006 05:23:00 AM  
Blogger Shrieking Geek said...

The real problem is that violence requires a victim. The extreme Left is getting quite, quite violent, and soon they will find their victims. It won't be all shouting forever, just as it was not in the 1960s. And then what?

1/25/2006 05:23:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

The anarchists would do much better work if they'd lose the uniforms. That they can't figure this out, is a clue that a 'fashion statement' is really what they want to make.

1/25/2006 05:28:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Shrieking Geek,

"The real problem is that violence requires a victim." Hatred requires an object. The standard goal of agitation is to personalize, yet dehumanize the enemy. It works very well, so far as it goes, but as you point out, there are problems. You generate all this hatred and then you have to put it somewhere.

1/25/2006 05:39:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

"My own sense is that one's political position is ultimately irrelevant when dealing with extremists." Wretchard


"Don't confuse me with the facts, my mind's made up!"

And MOB psychology, anyone? Subconsciously aware that, at ANY moment THEY-WE-I might be denounced, and knowing that I-WE have already made irrelevant and inexcusable ANY resorting to logic, reason, calm or anything resembling it, the FEAR we've engendered in our witch-hunting orgies of denunciation is both an intoxicant and a blinding fuel... EXTREMISM eats us alive, sends us to the gulags if not the guillotine!

1/25/2006 05:40:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

The wicked prowl on every side, when vileness is exalted among the sons of men. (Psalm 12)

1/25/2006 05:58:00 AM  
Blogger Karridine said...

I didn't see myself as symbolic or extreme, I was just a GI returning from Korea and walking through Sea-Tac airport...

...but when the gob of phlegm hit me, I knew the 'Peace Protesters' were the Useful Idiots that Comrade Lenin had mentioned, and my studies of America's enemies (and my Oath of Allegiance on entering 4 years of service, ' protect the Constitution from enemies, foreign and domestic...') had been strengthened by standing ON THE DMZ between Freedom and North Korean Socialist reality...

...which I wanted to send the spitting protestors to, but I was under orders NOT to engage, and with less than 30 hours of military service before an Honorable Discharge, I maintained internal discipline and got out of the airport, wiping away the spittle as a sort of Badge of Honor!

1/25/2006 06:01:00 AM  
Blogger nonomous said...

The "walk for life" photos tell a story one will never see on the 6 o'clock news. Therein lies the problem for the left: reality is leaking into the communication network.

1/25/2006 06:05:00 AM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Historically the best outlet for the hatred of Brownshirts or Red Guards (who were really disposable chumps) once the Party had done with them was in monumental labor projects, model collective farms and pointless projects like filling in ravines. It was neat disposal solution. After these labor camps they were no threat to the regime. They were all burned out. Back in the 1970s Castro had a Venceremos Brigade project where foreign leftists could visit Cuba and spend months cutting cane. He got free labor from this con and the conned were happy to provide it.

Maybe the problem is that today, there aren't any more of these wholesome totalitarian outdoor asylums left to provide therapy for all those who get cranked up on hatred. For those lucky enough to shoulder a responsibility the agression slowly evaporates. But those who find enough to live on the margins, and continue to live on the margins get bloated by this gas without the slightest chance of an outlet.

1/25/2006 06:17:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

I think that what we are seeing is a cruise down a river - Denial.
The hard Left does not merely have beliefs and ideas, but lives in a world of its own making. When things rudely intrude, like jagged rocks poking through the fog, the reaction is to insist that there are not rocks, that they are paper mache forgeries set up by an Evil Other, and that since the rocks are forgeries they do not indicate that the walls of a canyon are closing in. Everyone knows that behind the fog is a broad gentle river and beyond that a wide savannah populated by unicorns and pink elephants. Anyone who denies this reality will be tossed off the boat.

Alternatively, what comes to mind is the frequent observation that had Hitler, Tojo, and Saddam had it in their power to bring the entire world in the hour of their defeat, they would have done so. Maybe they are not nuts; maybe they are just plain evil.

1/25/2006 06:18:00 AM  
Blogger NN said...

The Left is acting out its anti-freedom creed. They have never really wavered in this respect. Their concern for the poor and downtrodden in general could perhaps be termed touching but hardly convincing. All their transformation acts are merely ways to keep the campaign against capitalism and freedom going.

Protect the dignity and independece of the worker from capitalist finance by creating the Worker's Socialist Paradise? No, that ended in mass death. Try Capitalism and individual rights instead. Guarantee the welfare and economic independece of each by building the Welfare State? No, you only end up with docile dependents in a floundering economy unwilling even to defend themselves. Try Capitalism and individual rights. Save humanity by protecting us from environmental change? If you want us to live without technology and what it implies, sure. Incidentally, the cleanest environment is to be found where rights are respected the most. Protect the rights of every group they perceive as weak and on the fringe? Are you sure that's what you're after? Your cure only makes things worse (political correctness). Under capitalism the smallest minority to be protected is the individual.

With each successive failure, the Left loses one more rationalization. Their arguments fly so much in the face of facts they constantly have to cede ground, yet the basic impulse remains alive. They do not want to change. What you're left with is rage, inarticulate rage, the Angry Left. I'd be angry too to have to be on the losing side all the time.

Freedom is freedom from compulsion.

1/25/2006 06:28:00 AM  
Blogger NN said...

... If the Left is anti-freedom, they are in essence anti-anti-compulsion, i.e., for force. But you don't need dedcutive reasoning to reach this conclusion. All the Left's projects are enforced at the point of a gun. Some incalcitrant might disagree with their viewpoint and go his own way.

The Left has now reached the stage where they no longer have any arguments, as eloquently demonstrated by the pictures in the link above, and in their behavior towards Bush, how they deal with facts, etc. If they want maintain their position, the next logical step is to pick up a club and bash in the head of the opponent who will not listen. How many that are willing to go beyond the borders of civil society remains to be seen.

1/25/2006 06:37:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"wholesome totalitarian outdoor asylums"

ha! nice one. they are wholesome, aren't they - very cool & mollifying.

1/25/2006 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...


The most coarsening blow to US has been the deaths of 20 million preCitizens in the last 20 years.

I've often heard folks wonder why the German people did not stand up for the Jews & Gypsys, when they look in a mirror, they'll see the answer.

The Scale of our own Terror has been larger than old Adolf's and by making it "Legal" has loosened the Law from any Moral underpinning. As it did in Germany.

How do the Mohammedans view Abortion? Do they view it a Human Rught to kill Allah's future faithful?

I've read, here in the past weeks:
Can we trust those Iranians to Love their Children?
We have PROVED we do not love ours, why hold the Iranians to a higher Standard?

Their System just kills 'em later in life, but ours kills 'em, in the millions, all the same.

Explain to me our supposed Moral Superiority, cause I sure do not see it.

1/25/2006 06:56:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Osama could just as well have been a double-agent for the Mossad based on the the net outcome of his actions.

yes, and its a zionist plot to give hamas the win in palestine... once in power these "friends" of peace will launch attacks against israel thus causing the west to stop funding it...

thus hurting the poor palestinians...

all a zionist plot...

1/25/2006 07:10:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

feh, this is not mob psychology, it is simple human behavior. This is exactly the same behavior exhibited by islamic fundamentalists within islam and say, culture-of-life fundamentalists within the republican party. All groups attempt to destroy the middle ground to force moderates into their party.

1/25/2006 07:22:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...


My toenail is also a living tissue. If I choose to cut it off and flush it down the toilet that's my business.

1/25/2006 07:25:00 AM  
Blogger El Jefe Maximo said...


I liked your comment to Whit about the race to the bottom.

The other thing to note about the great Marxist purges of "counter-revolutionary wreckers" and "Trotskyists" is how eager those purged still are to defend the system that is consuming them. Stalin's victims invoked his name even as the NKVD murdered them. This same note even comes through in the Pacifica article you mention. If the left really goes after Lieberman, will he defend the left and the Democratic Party even as it purges him ?

I have seen the extreme personal hatred and villification at close range: I lost a friend of over 20 years this last election cycle. She was always left, I was always right. But she REALLY thinks the Bushies are coming for her, really believes in the Reichstag fire version of 9/11. College educated even.

I have tried not to fall into the same villification trap as the people on the left, but once one faction goes wacko, how do the rest of us avoid following suit ? Are any of us safe if the Kos types ever get real power ?

1/25/2006 07:27:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

before the scremin' an' yellin' starts, zombies photo-essay shows exemplary restraint on the part of the "pro-life" marchers in this case.
but we are familiar with the other examples that prove my point, gaunlets of frenzied hecklers surrounding abortion clinics, bombings of clinics and murders of doctors. Even in the blogverse culture-of-life arguments about schiavo, abortion, and ESCR devolve into hysterical name-calling on the part of the right.
The left is not the only ones that employ this tactic.
Here is a good data point illustrating my argument from Ann Coulter--
Coulter was asked why she condemns the terrorists so strongly, but not those who kill abortion doctors. She said that the latter have been extremely frustrated by the fact that they can’t vote on this issue, thanks to Roe vs. Wade, and that they worked within the system for twenty years without success before turning to murder. She said that those individuals believe they had been left with no other routes for dissent in the face of an ongoing atrocity. Coulter further suggested that although she would not take it upon herself to take extreme actions on the abortion issue, she will not condemn those who do.
via Winds of Change
i do not say this to provoke fighting, but i believe this behavior cannot be remedied unless it is understood.

1/25/2006 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger Doug Santo said...

I normally refrain from commenting on issues like this expect to express general disgust with the state of US politics. But this post brings to mind the Democratic effort to derail the Alito nomination. This, I think, can be seen as a symptom of the Bush Hatred Syndrome that has infected many of our friends on the left. The depths to which Democrats on the Judiciary Committee sank in their drive to paint Judge Alito as a right-wing nut were surprising to me. And now, a straight party line vote out of committee, and the likelihood of a straight party line vote in the full senate – amazing. I watched much of the Alito hearing on C-Span in the evenings. Judge Alito came across to me as a consummate professional, an expert on American law, and a decent and honorable man. I am truly disgusted by the Democrats in this instance.

I am a conservative and I remember my displeasure with Bill Clinton. I was not happy with his involvement in the Bosnia/Kosovo affair, but my disagreement with the administration was over the general plan for the use of force. I thought we had under committed and needed a bigger force including mechanized ground elements. I now believe I was wrong on that issue. I thought Clinton’s use of the Lincoln Bedroom to house large campaign donors was an affront to the American people. Still, he was my President and I supported our troops in the field, supported the war effort, and often found I could agree with some decisions he made.

I cite this as my only basis on which to judge the partisan rancor in Washington today. The rancor is over-the-top. It seems to be fueled by far left interest groups. Normally these groups are on the fringe of society, but for some reason mainstream elements have accepted some of the extreme rhetoric and brought it into the running political debate. The national press is complicit in this. I really cannot explain it. I believe it is a passing fad, but must admit to being distressed by it.

I believe many on the left are distressed by it as well. Joe Liberman, Steny Hoyer, many others. Democrats, in general, are good patriotic Americans. They are my brothers. Many seem to have lost their way. I hope they can recover their sense of balance and right and get back in the game.

Doug Santo
Pasadena, CA

1/25/2006 07:45:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

and, my references, Dan Sperber--Explaining Culture, Pascal Boyer--Religion Explained, and Michael Tomasello, The Cultural Origins of Human Cognition.
i reccommend them all. ;)

1/25/2006 07:50:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Dr Dolittle

And in that, Ms Coulter, whom I enjoy reading, is a tad hypercrital.

The "otherside" is bad and nasty, but is playing by the Rules, and she cannot condemn Murderers in her "good" cause.

What crap.

I understand your disdain for fingernails, I keep mine pretty short, but near born children are a different matter, at least to me, though.

But I do not march in the street, sign petitions, or set car bombs in the Mall's parking lot to show my irritation with the current state of affairs.

And so the toll rises.

Ms Colter's murdering activists have not improved the Social Condition, they should be condemned, not by Ms Colter's sarcastic wit, but to Death.

1/25/2006 08:04:00 AM  
Blogger james wilson said...

Ghandi: The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is an attribute of the strong. Thatcher: The facts of life remain conservative.

1/25/2006 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...


Your toenail is living tissue but there is no chance of it growing into a child. Comparing a embryo to a toenail is about the biggest stretch I have seen in a while for the pro abortion camp.

desert rat you have a very good point. We have begun to slip down that slippery road of not respecting life...where it ends no one knows. I do not believe though that Islam has any of the answers we are looking for.

The day will be won when I hear secularists explain why they love life so much.

I am not a secularist indeed that fact is what caused my break with Ayn Rand. God does exist...though this is as much as I have ever said about it online.

Pierre Legrand

1/25/2006 08:05:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

desert rat, i am a kzinret, not a man. ;)

1/25/2006 08:19:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

"Comparing a embryo to a toenail is about the biggest stretch I have seen in a while for the pro abortion camp."

Actually Pierre, it compares very nicely with dRat's rhetoric that those woman that have had abortions don't love their children. (Like my mom, who for example, have had abortions prior to having me born and after having me born, and prior to having my younger brother).

1/25/2006 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger enscout said...

A trick rider in the circus is standing on the backs of two horses galloping side-by-side around the ring. As long as the two horses keep their relative close positions the rider can stay balanced upon each.

In our past, the popular culture was at the side of a Biblical culture. What we are witnessing is the divergence if the two. Like the rider, we must choose which we will ride.

God uses the tempter to separate his people.

1/25/2006 08:28:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And each Iranian mother loves her children, as well, mika.

Mothers of all Cultures have sent thier sons off to War and those risks that follow, often certain death.

On an individual level I was involved in an abortion option, and was thankful for it.

My personal Moral Choices are symtematic of the System's disese rather then an individuals.

Since as a Constitutional question, it was decided long ago that a fetus is a fingernail, my Society has excorsized my inner doubt.
We've been redeemed by the Constitution as having acted within our 'Rights".

That may be one reason the Mohammedans see US as Infidels.

Matter of Perspective, I guess.

1/25/2006 08:42:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Obviously abortion is a nuanced issue. I happen to think the courts have dealt with this nuanced issue as best as anyone could. The Mohammedans are Philistines. Intellectual midgets in every way. Whatever their position happens to be, it is irrelevant to our debate.

1/25/2006 08:54:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

The issue of whether to voluntarily terminate a pregnancy can be cast as personal one, and as such one of individual freedom versus state control. I think that most of us are uncomfortable with abortion used merely as a convienience but are equally uncomfortable with the degree of State control required to prevent it.

But, getting back to Wretchard's point about what will everyone look like in the end, we have seen pro-life people advocate killing doctors.

We have also seen supposedly pro-women groups oppose such things as free pre-natal care and also oppose charging crimminals for the death of an unborn child when the mother is hurt or killed, or in supporting memorial services for the unborn killed in such a manner. It has spilled over into other areas such as the withdrawal of life support from patients.

Meanwhile groups such as PETA have been found to demonstrate so much concern for animals that they have been collecting them from shelters, killing them, and disposing of the bodiess in store dumpsters.

It is not the principle itself but where it leads you that says what kind of person you are.
Hitler's first plan was to ship all of Europe's Jews to Madagascar where they could live unemcumbered. When that proved to be a bit too difficult, he ordered them executed.

1/25/2006 09:00:00 AM  
Blogger doolz said...

With respect, elements within the NDP have been demonizing the Conservative Party and its predecessors since as long as I can remember, and I was raised NDP. They had a hatred for Brian Mulroney at least as strong as what has been unleashed against Harper. What's more disturbing is when the Liberal Party stoops to such levels, as witness former Liberal MP Carolyn Parrish's temper tantrum attacks against Bush.

1/25/2006 09:18:00 AM  
Blogger enscout said...

My beliefs don't allow me to accept the state as the final authority.

We can be redeemed by God & still beholden to the state. OTOH we can be pardoned by the state but still have to face God's judgement.

Jesus said, "Render therefore unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's; and unto god the things that are god's."

Then as now, the political enemies conspired together to ensnare Him.

1/25/2006 09:30:00 AM  
Blogger Brett L said...

This is the natural order of representative government. It is only because we have such a plethora of representative democracies that we are seeing it but the descent is as follows:

1) Any party that establishes a generational majority will eventually be corrupted by power.

2) As pressure mounts to "throw the bums out" three phenomena will be observed:
a. Identity Politics - divide the electorate into self-identifying blocs competing against each other and play one against the other.
b. Lower Voter Standards - be the party to enfranchise and support some disenfranchised group.
c. Get Joe Citizen on the Dole - redistribution of wealth by the government always favors the "in" party.

3) Free Bread and Circuses - This terminal phase can be reached by either the majority party's pyrrhic victory, or by pressure of the former majority party on the new majority. Either way it becomes the "Race to the Bottom". Regulation, taxation, and government redistribution of capital run rampant.

4) The End - the Free Bread and Circuses routine eventually so weakens the state that either revolution from inside or conquest from outside causes collapse of the State.

Most of the current Western democracies are somewhere in Stage 3. Due to relative wealth and demographics, the US and England are probably going to wheeze along for the longest, but it seems only a matter of time.

Note that revolutions do not have to be of the French variety. Eastern Europe is a good example of how peaceful revolutions might come about. The point is that in democracies it is always easier to pass laws and taxes than repeal them. Regulation and taxation strangles a democracy over time. Eventually, a revolution has to occur to wipe the slate clean and start fresh.

I give high odds to one of the nations that was part of Charlemagne's empire going through some sort of revolution within the next two decades. As the 'boomers start to die off and retire, their children will repudiate the State's promises of comfortable retirement. Or, the new European Caliphate will be established.

1/25/2006 09:44:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

"Explain to me our supposed Moral Superiority, cause I sure do not see it."

Neither do many of those whom, by way of remedy for terror, we would endeavor to democratize and liberalize. Ain't that a bitch.

1/25/2006 09:59:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

" I blame it all on the cult of Steve Jobs "
You could see the end-game when you found Intel Inside.

1/25/2006 10:09:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Find out where you stand!

1/25/2006 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger Citizen Duck said...

Though things may begin innocently enough with a declaration of war on BushChimpHitler the process of confrontation and radicalization inevitably leads to a rejection of the very idea of compromise, civility and respect which really underpins the democratic process.

Things begin with the definition of the Republican party as, at best "brain-dead" or "incompetent," and, at worse "evil." These sentiments come not only from the rank-and-file, but from the head of the DNC himself.

And compromise with "evil" is evil in and of itself, thus making compromise unlikely for those who subscribe to this sort of viewpoint.

Further, those who think of the Republicans in this way decry with great force, bile and vitriol those who do attempt to compromise, which slides the party ever Leftward.

For a party that claims to hold "nuanced" views that can't be easily destilled down to thirty second soundbites, it sure seems kind of hamfisted.

1/25/2006 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It's the Operating System that is the difference, doug, the chip is but a commodity.

I use Windows at home, for this and little personal projects, but serious work, Video & Publishing, Jobs still rules the roost.

Now he's going to be the biggest individual share holder in Mickey Mouse and that Magic Kingdom.

1/25/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"A trick rider in the circus is standing on the backs of two horses galloping side-by-side around the ring."
A trick for the New Millenium is two horses mounted by two back mounters.
Accidents are refered to the Brokeback Dept of the Local Infirmary.

1/25/2006 10:29:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Or does Moreau, like Dr. Frankenstein, like many bad parents, simply crave the rush of power that comes from creating life, a rush that fades to disinterest for the creations themselves?"

1/25/2006 10:30:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Original investment times 35,000!

1/25/2006 10:33:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

It never ceases to amaze me how, apparently, no Western government can function without somehow comparing itself to the USA and that conservatives can be not only demonized, but raucously attacked at every turn.

I have developed a theory. The very people who used to go around saying Spic, Kike, WOP, N!gger, Faggot, Whore, Slut, Lesbo, have been reformed. They now can vent their spleen with such palliatives as Conservative, Nazi, Fat Ass, Christian, Southern Hick, White Rube, Ugly, Religious Fanatic. It’s good to know that people have gone so far. Instead of persecuting people of ethnic origins and heritages other than Western European, they persecute exclusively people who draw on Western European culture and heritage, or worse yet, have a unique American flair.

“Before we smash them once and for all.” Are we hearing a bit of militantism? Seems I have been hearing more and more of this, in particular in relation to border issues. This could be a good sign, it a small step between being willing to take up arms and murder your neighbor to taking up arms and defending your country (tongue firmly in cheek).

Some of these strains sound vaguely reminiscent of the ‘unhinged’ right-wing, who would swallow their tongue in there compulsive vituperations. Remember the ‘Militias’?

I grew up in L.A. and never heard of Pacifica Radio, which is saying something because I was an up and coming moonbat in my late teenage years. But it doesn’t surprise too much, I was never able to indulge a half hour of Al Franken and Air America either… not even to ‘know’ the enemy.

In the end, civil war will come when the ‘disenfranchised’ Left decides that killing humans is good for Gaia and bearing witness to a modern ‘age of reason’ is insufferable.

“Death to Pilkington!”

The fevered pitch will increase in time until the machinations of Generation XY become the status quo and are roundly rejected by generation Zulu.

1/25/2006 10:42:00 AM  
Blogger kariato said...

Speaker to animals,
Good point, propaganda 101 to demonize your foe as to eradicate rational thought and argument. While claiming patriotism/morality so to justify your own actions without having to form your own rational argument.

The right used this in the 1990's against Clinton and the left are using it now against Bush. It is dangerous because as rational thought leaves politics only hatred and fear will replace the vacuum splitting the country red and blue while leaving the psyche of the country black and blue.

1/25/2006 10:43:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The added value came from somewhere, Mr Jobs & Mr Gates came out of the same enviorment.

Both have become exceedingly prosperous, as have their investors and in Mr Jobs's case customers.
Mr Gates went more mass market with an inferior product & better marketing, suckering IBM the way he did. IMO

I bet 'unnemployed capitialist' would like to know tomorrows seers.

1/25/2006 10:58:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

.....And each Iranian mother loves her children, as well, mika.

Mothers of all Cultures have sent thier sons off to War and those risks that follow, often certain death.

as does the palestinian mothers, cept they do exclaim, we breed our kids to blow up.... to kill jews...

a meeting between hamas and hezbollah leaders took place last week, upon seeing each other, they pulled out photos of their dear children, upon seeing the photos one in the crowd exclaimed, my how they blow up so fast....

please do not compare suicide death cult mothers to other mothers in the world, those specific mothers (within the islamic world) that breed to murder are sub-human and should be sterilized and put in jail for child abuse, not rewarded with new EU funded houses and kitchens

1/25/2006 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

He's ex SS with the US Navy, probably 'scoping out new opportunities.

1/25/2006 11:08:00 AM  
Blogger iotm said...

Once again you have some seriously flawed analysis and some ignorant statements.

The NDP are not centre-left or left of centre or anything like this. They are centre. They ran one leftist candidate in Quebec where they never win anything and he was marginalized by the party leadership.

Second of all no one in Canada likes the Conservatives or Stephen Harper. The Conservatives were elected to punish the Liberals for being corrupt and useless, not because anyone actually likes what the Conservatives have to say.

Also everyone in Canada likes to pick on the leader no matter what party. Canada's system doesn't concentrate power into the hands of the Prime Minister to the point where the house of commons or congress is virtually symbolic like in the United States. The party matters a lot more than the Prime Minister, and the biggest problem with the Conservatives is not Stephen Harper, it's alot of their fundamentalist christian candidates who if they ran in a place like Toronto or Montreal or Vancouver, they'd so thoroughly discredit the party they'd be lucky to win a single seat.

You lot must be happy your pro-invasion and occupation of Iraq and pro-torturing people buddy Micheal Ignatief was elected, as a Liberal. He's rumoured to be a candidate for replacing Paul Martin which would move the Liberals quite a bit further to the right than the Conservatives. That would really blow your minds wouldn't it?

Once again, for real analysis, you should read my blog.

1/25/2006 11:08:00 AM  
Blogger Cassidy said...

Obviously, based on the orginal post, you're left with the obvious conclusion that the left is insane and a national liability.

But wait, I thought, all you needed to do was change "left" to "right" and a few other words and suddenly you have a good description of the state of the right: mostly well-purposed individuals but with a "minority [that] by its militance often sets the agenda."

The point of all this is that the entirety of the political spectrum is now dominated by the FAR RIGHT and the FAR LEFT. Really, there is no in between. Either I am a weak-kneed liberal who kills babies and is in bed with the terrorists or I am a gay-hating storm trooper who wants to throw away the Constitution on a whim. Again, there is no in between.

The left is to Bush today what the right was to Clinton in the 1990s. The right hated Clinton. HATED. They would have voted for a plastic spoon if it meant getting the Dems out of the White House. And today, the left would do the same to the Repubs, except they would probably get caught up arguing over what kind of spoon to use and whether it should be made out of recycled material. Then they'd turn around and realize they lost, again.

Yes, I am a liberal. But I would like to think of myself as a thoughtful one, someone who wished Belafonte would shut up and that his party would stop being "that guy" at a party who keeps complaining that the guy pouring beer from the keg is making too much foam. But I get shouted down by my own side and by the right. I was disappointed in his post because I would expect Wretchard at Belmont to be someone who would instantly recognize that not only has the left been hijacked but the right as well.

1/25/2006 11:10:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

karioto, sorry, I can't agree with the moral equivalence. Clinton's scandals--and there were many--were not trumped up political persecutions to anywhere near the degree that Bush's are. Just look into the matter, you'll see.

1/25/2006 11:20:00 AM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Congratulations IOTM,
Thank you for sharing your real analcyst. Once again, your are Idiot-Of -The-Month.

1/25/2006 11:24:00 AM  
Blogger iotm said...

It's also funny you're worried about "leftist witch hunts". Meanwhile your beloved government is spying on these same leftists and eliminating the basic civil liberties of the American people because they're so paranoid someone might disagree with them. There are terrorists who want to kill scores of American citizens? No bother says the NSA, we're to busy spying on Greenpeace and the ACLU! Neither of which by the way are left wing in any matter, which just goes to show that you've got a renewed McCarthyism in the US.

Basically you're worried that someone might bad mouth an extremist right winger on the internet, while those same paranoid extremists are shredding the US bill of rights, spying on citizens, detaining them without charge or trial, preventing them from speaking or marching in public, setting in motion massive propaganda machines to attack their credibility and to silence any possible freedom of the press they might be able to purchase.

Once again you've got a bad case of the Bush calling the tree a shrub.

1/25/2006 11:37:00 AM  
Blogger iotm said...

Oh this is rich, after whinning about people possibly personally insulting the new Prime Minister I'm met with a littany of personal attacks ignoring what I said.

I guess that's what happens when you abandon logic in favour of emotional pleas.

1/25/2006 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Eenie, Meanie, Minie, Moti.

1/25/2006 12:02:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Learn by example, learn Moti by Rote.

1/25/2006 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Mr.Atos said...


Sometime back I posted the following point on my blog that subsequently initiated a series. It goes, I am afraid, to the point that you and Mr. Janke are making.

"Take a political movement that was developed via modern sensibilities and enlightened ideological exploration, that flourished during a cultural orgy of unbounded depravity and ultimately - due to a natural shifting of cultural sensibilities - lost touch with mainstream ideas and was in the process of being discarded. What would happen to that movement? Pardon the apparent hyberbole for a moment and recall what happens to sewerage. Once the water is filtered from the solid waste, that sludge is deposited in ponds where it evaporates to a superconcentrated paste of septic waste.

America is well into the turning of the Cultural Revolution resulting in a maturation of sensibilities, and a renewed appreciation of ethics, morals, values, and integrity. As more and more 'good' citizens evaporate from Liberalism and the Democrat party, all that will be left is the filth... that which is untreatable, not compatible, will go nowhere else..

... and stinks unbearably of rot and decomposition.

What is being Left is a toxic poison that is attempting to feed itself to humanity... by force."

"By Force" is the key phase here. The core of what is being Left is dangerously close to subverting the frontiers of common civility to promote their vision... by Force (read violence).

Time for another installment.

1/25/2006 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

iotm did you just come back all fired up from some moron rally or what? i was enjoying the silence.

1/25/2006 12:05:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

seriously flawed analysis
ignorant statements
no one in Canada likes the Conservatives or Stephen Harper
your pro-invasion and occupation of Iraq and pro-torturing people

You are not “whinning” any friends due the belligerent statements you make.

“The NDP are not centre-left” That is because you’re a moonbat.

My comments are not a littany (sic), others are just more bright and polite than I am and ignore your puerile arrogance.

1/25/2006 12:08:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...


I'm still waiting hear why removing Saddam's regime was not a good idea.

Also, what's the logic in claiming that abortion, or the move to remove Saddam's regime, is a Right or Left issue? Is this logic the same as you claiming that the NDP is not a Leftist party? Cause if it is, Annoy Mouse makes a perfectly logical argument. Hope you can prove him wrong.

1/25/2006 12:21:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

iotm: Thanks for the invite to your blog. I think I''l pass.

Looks like you've got quite a bit of maturing to do first.

Oh, when will they learn that their vitriol is only hurting their cause.

1/25/2006 12:22:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

The extreme Left is getting quite, quite violent, and soon they will find their victims.

Their "victims" will more than likely have guns. At least here in America, although maybe not in Berkeley. At that point it will become very interesting as to exactly WHO the victim is.

I keep telling myself that a percentage of these liberal leftists are recent university graduates, and we know that their viewpoints will change as they grow up and mature. I just wonder if the next generation of university students will clutch the leftist ideology with as much vigor. It does seem SOOOOOO counter-productive in a shooting yourself in the foot kind of way.

1/25/2006 12:26:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Blackfive, certainly no card-carrying Commie, is unhappy a Warrant who killed an Iraqi General under interrogation is only going to get a fine, reprimand and some light detention for the offense. In a nonpolarized world people might agree on the that and that Johnny Walker Lindh ought to be kept in jail for his treason. In an extremely partisan environment there is no justice from the standpoint of a shared community, only tribal retaliation. Here another link at Zombie which covered the demonstrations in support of Tookie Williams to illustrate, how from a partisan point of view, Tookie could be two different men to different factions.

1/25/2006 12:36:00 PM  
Blogger Jrod said...

Has anybody coined the phrase Harper Derangement Syndrome (HDS) yet?

There was a great piece in the SF Weekly about 10 months ago about the troubles over at KPFA (Pacifica). It read like a trash novel--conspiracy, sexism, racism, name calling, recriminations, counter-recriminations, raspberries, temper tantrums, sand throwing--reading it I felt like I was watching a 2nd grade class through a 2 way mirror while the teacher stepped away.

It seems the chickens have come home to roost afterall.

1/25/2006 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

Sir, is it unpartisan for me to volunteer that Zombie is not without her own bias?

1/25/2006 12:47:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...


No it's not unreasonable to assume that Zombie is biased. Take it is an initial starting point and then physically go to a demonstration near you to see for yourself. I think you'll find it corresponds to Zombie's pictures with this difference; a nuance that can't be conveyed in pictures: you'll find people in the Left crowd who are actually human beings that you may personally like. You may not believe in the same things, it's true, but they will turn out to be people.

1/25/2006 12:55:00 PM  
Blogger Cassidy said...

Quick question to the commentors:

An hour or so ago I posted something about how both sides have become polarized and how there is no in between (and Wretchard just seconded it, as it would appear). However, there was no response. The question is why?

The lack of an answer seemed to prove what I was saying, that there is no more room for the middle or left-of-middle viewpoint. Everything was either far left or far right. Most of the commentors agreed with Wretchard and then went into a litany of their own. If we are trying to correct today's political problems, then we are not doing a very good job.

1/25/2006 12:56:00 PM  
Blogger bjbarron said...

There is no answer to the abortion debate as long as Roe v. Wade is on the books.

Whether or not you ban abortion or allow abortion nationally, you will still have half the country unhappy with the decision.

The only choice is to overturn Roe and send the question back to the states where it belongs. Then at least you'll have abortion where it's wanted, and pro-life where it is wanted.

I'm pro-choice myself, but Roe is not even bad law, it's a bad decision by a couple of men in black.

1/25/2006 01:08:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

If it is any consolation Cassidy, I started to write a comment that accused you of “being "that guy" at a party who keeps complaining that the guy pouring beer from the keg is making too much foam”

Seemed to me your lament that you get it from the Left and the Right demanded it. The problem is, is that even the most extreme have somebody over each shoulder… problem is, is one of them is usually their polar opposite.

1/25/2006 01:09:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

It's an unfortunate fact that because of the distribution of human failings about 5% of any group of people (I'm recalling the stat from some source I can't remember) are sadistic or cruel. There will always be a need to police one's own ranks, both on the conservative and leftist sides of the aisle. In a highly charged partisan atmosphere the process of self-policing becomes harder, though not less necessary.

1/25/2006 01:11:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Interesting stat Wretch. I have long theorized that 5% of the population is unemployable, but not for being evil.

1/25/2006 01:16:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...


That's why I like the Israeli political system over the American. Fringe parties only get to hijack a few seats in parliament. If you're smart you get to be in a coalition government. If you're really smart, you get to be the kingmaker with the balance of power. I know some people complain of the instability in the system, but I happen to think it's a good thing. It quickly flushes out political abortions. :P

1/25/2006 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...


The reason people are polarized is because they've diverged on key issues. Anyone familiar with the Left and with some conservative elements for that matter, will know that one of their key activities is "community building". In the extreme people belong to a 'collective', a group no less encompassing than the ummah. Expulsion now means what exile used to mean in the days before multiculturalism -- the loss of all meaningful human connection. Multiculturalism never meant that culture would be abolished. It simply meant that the cultural identity which mattered would be transfered from the larger community to the sect. Once the sect exists, the next step is the forced conversion of the rest. Polarization immediately follows.

1/25/2006 01:20:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"Blackfive, certainly no card-carrying Commie, is unhappy a Warrant who killed an Iraqi General under interrogation is only going to get a fine, reprimand and some light detention for the offense."

- Wretchard

When I read this the first question that came to mind was, "Was the General in a bad way when he arrived for interrogation?"

Sure enough, CounterColumn has this from the WaPo:

"According to court testimony and classified accounts of his treatment obtained by The Washington Post, Mowhoush was subjected to harsh beatings by a secret group of Iraqi paramilitaries, code-named Scorpions, who worked with the CIA. One witness who testified behind a curtain during Welshofer's trial was accidentally identified as having worked with the CIA, and witnesses also described how Mowhoush was beaten so badly by the Iraqi natives that he had a hard time breathing and could not walk on his own."

Helps explain why the jury saw it the way that it did.

1/25/2006 02:14:00 PM  
Blogger kariato said...

Buddy Larson,
My point was both sides are engaged in propaganda warfare, I did not make a personal judgment of the moral correctness of either side which is subjective to each individual. Rather that engaging in such extreme propaganda creates extreme dangers for the country as a whole to leave rational thought behind and enter the realms of irrational hatred. Where a flare into the darkness may cause a fire that could burn out of control.

1/25/2006 02:21:00 PM  
Blogger AndrewK said...


I like Stephen Harper.
I like the Conservatives.
Am I in Canada?

I guess not, hopefully that argument will work when the taxman comes a knockin'.

1/25/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Mr.Atos said...

Cassidy... I believe my point is that the actual polarization is not occuring down the center, but right of axis. Its not as much a 'polarization as a shift of the center of mass. At some point, 'Liberals' like myself (some time ago) recognize there to be more commonality of sensibilities with one side of the discussion than the other. Its not really a political transition because the position on fundamental issues has not changed so much as the importance of that value has been vacated by the other side.

In other words, I did not become a Republican because I have changed my fundamental beliefs, but rather found that those beliefs had been wholeheartedly abandoned by the Left. Moreover, what was being Left was becoming abjectly offensive to those fundamnetal beliefs. In essence, I did not become less 'liberal' but rather found that my values and my notion of civilization were better represented elsewhere. I was evaporated away from what is being Left.

Take for instance the notion of choice in reproduction. When the issue stopped being about a conscientious evaluation of the nature of one's personal responsibility to humanity weighed against immediate personal interests, and became a crusade against human reproduction altogether, the axis shifted to the Left of a large mass of public support. The more that occurs on a variety of issues, the axis of symmetry shifts further and faster toward one side... in this case the Right.

There is no such thing happening as polarization, imo. Think of it as a cultural capsizing of sorts whereby the popular values of so-called mainstream culture invert or flip. A turning takes place.

1/25/2006 02:47:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

Wretchard: 5:39 The key word is “hatred.” The most dangerous of all passions. Blinds the mind and consumes the host.

nonomous: 6:05 The same thought occurred to me. The antique media can no longer monopolize the information flow. Great name BTW.

Wretchard: 6:17 I’m sure Castro, Chavez or Morales can find something for these people to do.

The Radical: 6:28, The question is what do they do with this bottled up rage? I see you pointed that out at 6:37.

Speaker to animals: 7:22 I hope you are not trying to equate Islamists and fundamentalist Christians.

Enscout: 8:28
That’s exactly what is happening.

Cassidy: 11:10, Please, the far right was marginalized years ago. It has no voice in American politics. If you think so, you have no idea what the “far right” means.

iotm: 11:37 Some bad news: You may be BDS positive.

Nahncee: 12:26 I like to think so too.

Wretchard: 12:25, That’s true. One-on-one, reasonable people tend to be much more civil to one another.

bjbarron: 1:08 I agree 100%. Doing so might also return sanity to Judicial nominations.

1/25/2006 02:56:00 PM  
Blogger doolz said...

Story from a couple weeks back

Martin warned Wednesday that Harper’s refusal to support the Liberal initiative to revoke the notwithstanding clause was based on Tory intentions to reopen controversial morality issues such as a woman’s right to choose an abortion and same-sex marriages.

NDP Leader Jack Layton dismissed Martin’s statements as scare tactics.

Martin “has nothing left to say to Canadians other than to tell them that unless they vote Liberal, the sun will not rise, spring will not come, and volcanoes will destroy the earth,” Layton said while campaigning in Hamilton, Ont.

Layton and some other NDP luminaries such as former leader Ed Broadbent have been much more rational than the Liberals in their more modest criticism of Harper. Having cooperated with Harper in bringing the Libs down, they tacitly gave him the chance to pull this election off, and he did so with a strong platform and a classy campaign.

I think that Layton probably just tuned out the anti-Harper jeers and boos as being par for the course. Why should he interrupt his speech to engage with the negativists? The NDP gained in this election, and Harper has proven to be quite capable of handling a few numbskulls.

I'm not sure if iotm is really Canadian, or even from this planet.

1/25/2006 03:04:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

mr atos:
You are a perfect example of what I spoke to earlier. Your standards have not changed. You have not become more conservative in your views as the left keeps telling us.

Politics as a whole in the west has become more liberalized - both parties in the US and with the growth of socialism in Europe.

I have said it before: JFK would not recognize his party today.

I think there are many here who were Kennedy Democrats in the 60's and now watch in amazement the Republican Party shift left of its conservative principles.

Where does that place the Democratic Party today? Obviously too far left for most.

1/25/2006 03:49:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

More so than you realize. In my youth, prior to my misspending the balance of it, I was priveleged to visit the Rockerfeller Estate in NY.

Out door art, golf course, two lane bowling alley, indoor and out door pools, a compound by anyone's description.

Ole' Rockie's policy solutions, let alone HHH's would be portrayed, today, as the mutterings of a neo-Hitler.

Not fit for Public Conversation.

1/25/2006 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

Speaker to animals: 7:22 I hope you are not trying to equate Islamists and fundamentalist Christians.

Sorry whit, in cultural anthropology, they are both fundamentalists. The extremists of the democratic party are fundamentalists also. They all seek a return to a "pure" ideology, and punish to varying degrees those they percieve as dissenters and apostates.

1/25/2006 04:57:00 PM  
Blogger Brett Blatchley said...

We are in the midst of a civil war in our nation; much innocent blood has been spilt among the pre-born; how soon before the bullets start to fly?

1/25/2006 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

speaker to animals:

Fortunately for the abortionists there just aren't many Christians who will take up the sword against them. Those that would I consider extreme and should be dealt with (and to my recollection we have) as we would the numerous Islamists who swear to slit your throat.

1/25/2006 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger Mister Ghost said...

How soon before the CBC produces a documentary on Conservative-Hating, Gay Canadian Cowboys?

1/25/2006 05:46:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But, enscout, when the discussion focuses on Ms Coulter, and her refusal to condem the evil doers, does that not remove her moral authority?
Is she not but another neo-Terrorist?
To be dismissed out of hand, like Mr Arrafat or President Assad.

Or does she deserve a break, today?

1/25/2006 05:46:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Mr. Atos,
“The more that occurs on a variety of issues, the axis of symmetry shifts further and faster toward one side... in this case the Right.”

Take in point the concept of the ‘extreme fiber’ in engineering. What this entails is the distance from the centroid, the center of mass of an amorphous material, to the furthest point on the section. Take a bundle of rope, for instance, and grip it with both hands and bend it in the middle. The ‘fibers’ on the top go into tension (are pulled on) and the ‘fibers’ on the bottom go into compression (are pushed together). Somewhere in between is a neutral fiber, one that is neither pulled nor pushed. I see this as your axis of symmetry.

Now have people shifted from right to left? I think so in general. Have some people shifted from left to right? Clearly if we have militias and “American” Nazis they have, but I don’t think they have become mainstream. Certainly the mainstream media has showcased the left, in part because it is more avant-garde to be liberal in the extreme than it is to be right-wing to the extreme. Certainly some of those who identify with the extreme left or the extreme right have done so as a reaction to ideologies that they abhor in their extreme counter parts.

We are seeing ‘liberalism’ that made hay of racial, economic, and pacifism being put to shame in the United States.

Consider racial equality and economics – regardless of the partly that was the ‘champion’ of civil rights, aside from the big lie in Europe and Canada, African-Americans are grabbing onto the brass ring. I have several African-American friends and they have good educations, good jobs, own homes, and drive nice luxury cars. They are staying out of the poor-little-me victim game more and more. Welfare’s time has come and gone…’the days of big government programs are over’.

Consider pacifism – It is hard to argue pacifism with a black eye. A conservative is a liberal who has been mugged. 9-11 did change everything.

The reaction to this deconstruction of the ideals of the Democratic Party is not the perennial reconstruction of the party platform but flaying of its bits at their political adversaries. I wonder if we will ever see a schism in the Democrat Party like we’ve seen in the Republican Party over abortion, guns, and border control.

Most people consider themselves to be nuanced centrists, but if one doesn’t combine the extremes to cancel out one another, they have only managed to mark a new position on the spectrum and call it home. I suppose that is why our idiota thinks that all MSM is ‘conservative’.

“I didn't leave the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party left me”

1/25/2006 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...



She's been pretty consistently agressive in her message. That, IMO is over the top and can't be dismissed.

Sadly, if she were advocating for the left today in similar fashion, she would get a pass from them.

The double standard needs to be removed.

1/25/2006 05:53:00 PM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Belief systems in terminal decay are very difficult times for true-believers.

How shattering must it be to see the beliefs for which you have sacrificed your life were rubbish all along; nobody listening to what you say any more.

It is interesting to see the age of some of the leftoids in the photo-essay - they have no life left to switch. Too late.

Some true believers will react with violence - last ditch response.

The Left, Islam. Dying beliefs.

Dying dreams.

Lash out before you go.


1/25/2006 05:55:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"’the days of big government programs are over’."

It'd be nice if someone informed the President.

1/25/2006 06:02:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Ouch, I was paraphrasing President Clinton in regards to the welfare state, not the state of welfare for corporations!

1/25/2006 06:13:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I can only speak for myself, I hope to convince others to see the virtue of my view.

Peace thru Superior Firepower

That was a motto in my youth, now as an older man, I'd advise retraint where possible,
Victory when War is inevititable, sooner rather than later.

1/25/2006 06:19:00 PM  
Blogger Brett L said...

I want to pass a Constitutional Amendment: Any Person who receives more money or benefits from the Government than they oay shall be disenfranchised in the next Federal Elections, excepting persons who are currently serving or Honorably served an enlistment or commission in the Armed Forces.

Let's see how big the government is when the Federal Employees Union can't vote. The Government should never have gotten into the day-to-day charity racket.

1/25/2006 06:21:00 PM  
Blogger grrr1 said...

All this should have been expected when the Soviet Union disintegrated: all the clowns were useful then and were given some overarching purpose as well as kept in check tactically. Since the "controlling authority" disappeared their orchestra descends into cacophony.

1/25/2006 06:40:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...


I've often thought that it would be wise to give citizens a choice of welfare or voting priviledges. Your proposal takes it a step further.


The abortion issue is a source of great anguish for many. I think Ann Coulter was being partly apologetic for the abortionist killers, which I can sypathize with, but maybe advocating their tactics, which I can't condone.

We all have our views. The numbers are staggering. More than a million abortions per year in the US since Roe v Wade. Most since then are a mere convenience. It is the shame of our nation and of our generation.

I don't consider the abortionist to be a Dr. given their practice flies in the face of their oath unless the mother's life is threatened (which is a tiny percentage of cases).

The staggering loss of innocent life is akin to war. We have made (conventional) war on those who would take innocent lives throughout our history. Who will speak for the unborn?

1/25/2006 06:52:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Brett I,
Concur with your proposal. It is a supreme conflict of interest when you are able to vote for your own handouts. No politician could get elected without offering more and more pork. There comes a critical mass where the taxpayer will have no proportional representation at all. Where I live in San Diego, the city has gone all but bankrupt by pension plans that were overstuffed in order to get the Union vote. We in America as a whole are servant and pawns to a government that is for the government and by government. Why is the illegal immigration issue so intractable? Because no politician wants to alienate the illegal populace nor those who are their camp followers in the government. It is like the self-licking ice cream cone. Sounds good but melts in your hand. San Diego is in for a big hang-over and I suspect that we will be in abundant company.

My body my sperm… don’t get me started on abortion. Simple solution: we need more Latin American Catholics. They don’t believe in our culture, they are Papists so are immune to the cacophony of secular dissent.

1/25/2006 07:38:00 PM  
Blogger Horses said...

I agree with Mika The wicked prowl on every side, when vileness is exalted among the sons of men. (Psalm 12) There are extremists on each side that lose their moral compass.

1/25/2006 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

The demonstration in San Francisco,I believe is indicative of a greater battle than left vs.right.It's a war against God that has always been at the heart of ultra leftism.From the Jacobins in France warring against the clergy to the Spanish Republicans committing vile atrocities against nuns and priests;this is in essence at the heart of "progressivism"It's the ACTUP degenerates committing blasphemy at St' Patrick's Cathedral.I see it only getting more extreme as time passes.It's the Mark of the Beast in the hearts of those who despise God,truth,beauty,faith,family, children,high culture,freedom, sacrifice and nobility.
They love and worship at the altar of abortion mills,bathhouses,ugly pierced tattooed strangeness.Paul wrote about this conflict in in his Second letter to Timothy about life at the end of the age"Yea and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution
But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse,deceiving and being deceived'

1/25/2006 08:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

There's no deception like the left's self-deception.

1/25/2006 08:37:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Equating Islamic Fundementalists with Christian Fundementalists is hilarious and example enough of why the products of our colleges are so helpless unless self taught.

The idea that extreme positions by the mere fact of being extreme are similar is to buy into the entire multicultural relativist nonsense hook line and sinker. A criminal who murders, steals, rapes and burns children has absolutely nothing in common of substance with a citizen who never goes over the speed limit, never cheats on their taxes, never lies, is honorable, never promises what they cannot deliver and whose word is enough to honor a contract come hell or high water. Both are extreme and both are at the opposite ends of the morality spectrum.

Equating criminals, who physically threaten, harass and murder (though there appears to be only 1 actual murder) as a tactic against abortionists, with Islamic fundementalists pretty funny. You guys need to get out more. Those guys are criminals who need to go to jail for not playing well with others. Islamic radicals have bit more ambitions than those losers.

Mika sorry but I believe that abortion is wrong and should not be legal. A child is not a toenail. If the measure of a child is when is it able to live on its own then pretty soon we will be able to off our children at age one since even when they are out of the womb they are dependent on us. The idea that taking a life is a choice is shocking.

Pierre Legrand

1/25/2006 09:03:00 PM  
Blogger Brett L said...


Apologizing for one murder starts you on the path that Wretchard originally posted about. Either "Thou Shalt Not Kill" is as true for the righteous as it is for the wicked, or it is meaningless. The point is to bear witness through your example, is it not?

Emmet Fox, a "Scientific Christian" from the early part of the 20th Century once said, "If [Jesus] is to be relied upon, then let us pay him the compliment of assuming that he meant what he said, and that he knew best about the art of living."

I believe Jesus was pretty explicit on who was to judge whom.

That said, I agree that the label "Fundamentalist Christian" has been so over applied as to lose any meaning.

However, as to the acceptability of killing or beating abortion doctors, do you accord PETA the same pass to destroy property in order to free animals? Just because you don't agree from whence their principles come, in a society without a State religion the Law of the Land must be binding.

I hope I don't come across as an abortion apologist, but I don't think the guys performing the abortions are the root of the problem. In that, at least, the Left was right.

My own position is that I hope no woman in my family or circle of friends is ever in doubt of the goodness of bearing a child, or worries about how that kid will get raised; but if they do, the decision will be enough of a hell without me demonizing them.

1/25/2006 09:37:00 PM  
Blogger Pierre Legrand said...

Apologizing for one murder starts you on the path that Wretchard originally posted about..

“I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”

I double checked my post and nowhere in it do I apologize for people who feel they have the right to use force to establish their beliefs. They are criminals who need to go to jail.

Islamic fundementalists are not criminals who need to go to jail. Both are killers but one of them is not a existential threat to our country the other is. Those who have trouble figuring out which one is which, worry me.


1/25/2006 10:34:00 PM  
Blogger Pascal Fervor said...

Thanks Wretchard.

Sorry I am so late to this comment stream.

Has anybody made note as to how easily the nihilists have been accepted in that crowd? A sign reading "death to humans" is not far from the urchin bearing an inflated uterus exposed with the words "My baby is Pro-Choice" written upon it.

Short plug for my viewpoint: note how easily the poisonous propaganda in the very word "overpopulation" leaves many, even here replying for the Right, employing half-measures in their analysis by mostly expressing disgust and disbelief by the antics of the counter-rally participants when it should be clear how much it is that Malthusian misanthropy propels it.

Undoubtedly there are those in the crowd who are holdovers from the days when the abortion legalization crowd made at least ostensibly rational arguments. Maybe some of those who went there looked around at what they were surrounded and vowed "never again." My guess they did not get a chance to see what Zombie saw and so, with the help of MSM, are still in the dark as to who they are in league with.

I am sadly convinced that many of the reasonable among them who did notice, like Cassidy here, have convinced themselves that the Right must be just as viciously populated. It helps sustain them in their choice of faction. It surely also reveals how much they have bought into all those moral relativism arguments that enables the Left to exist in the first place. Thus they feel no real examination is necessary and so none will be made.

Cassidy, you didn't see Right wing wackos at this rally. All the wackos were in the counter rally. And so it is mostly to be found in the mainstream Right. Many are like those silent marchers. I don't expect you to agree, but I felt you should read it at least once.

1/26/2006 01:44:00 AM  
Blogger Pascal Fervor said...


Your renaming of Moti has always appeared apt, and never more so than today. Seems iotm is fully schooled in Hegel. Our Curmudgeon Emeritus discused the growing phenomenon just this Monday The War on Truth as indicative of how it is all the Left has left itself.

1/26/2006 02:02:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

I am sorry that I derailed your thread into an abortion discussion, Sir.
The point i was trying to make was that, yes, the PETA extremists are fundamentalists also. They attempt to force their ideology on more moderate groups with extreme tactics.
Christian fundamentalists are not the same as Islamic fundamentalists, but they do have similiarities, and they exhibit some of the same behaviors. My Ann Coulter example was meant to illustrate this, in that she is an apologist for pro-life bombers and murderers, just like Islamic fundamentalists who claim homicide bombimng is justified. The difference is degree, not philosophy. Again, the definition of fundamentalism is seeking a return to a golden age of "purer" behavior.

Discussion of abortion makes me sad. It is so pointless. Whether or not abortion is legal is irrelevent. Abortion mitigates biology. We have the science to do abortion. So, abortions will happen, legal or not. You cannot outlaw abortions. You cannot outlaw scientific knowledge.
Our best option is to try to make abortion "safe, legal and rare" rare through education and cultural institutions. But legislating against it will never work.

1/26/2006 05:02:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

I'll read "The War on Truth" in the morning.
Credit for "Moti" belongs to Peter_UK. I like it also.
In the next thread I refer him for treatment by Dr. Sanity.

1/26/2006 05:03:00 AM  
Blogger Towering Barbarian said...

El Jefe Maximo

"I have tried not to fall into the same villification trap as the people on the left, but once one faction goes wacko, how do the rest of us avoid following suit ?"

The best solution I can give you is to associate with those who are apolitical or are engaged in something that has currently made them apolitical. D&D nights, bridge, book discussion clubs, bowling nights, anime conventions all come to mind here among other things in that regard among other things. My suspicion is that too much politics is part of what sent them around the bend in the first place and would more or less do it to *anyone*. ^_^;

Speaker to Animals,
"Abortion mitigates biology. We have the science to do abortion. *So, abortions will happen, legal or not. You cannot outlaw abortions.* You cannot outlaw scientific knowledge.
Our best option is to try to make abortion "safe, legal and rare" rare through education and cultural institutions. *But legislating against it will never work.*" (Emphasis mine)

Feh. A Kzin of all sophonts should know better. Rapes occur in spite of laws against rape. Does that mean you feel a stunning moral obligation to go out and make rape legal? How about murder and robbery? We have the science to do murder and robbery so does that mean we should equate murder and robbery with scientific knowledge and say that we *can't* outlaw them? o_O

Leaving aside the fact that I think the word "can't" gets made a substitute for "shouldn't" in sloppy memes of this sort, I can't help but consider it lame that the notion a law might be broken somehow invalidates a law. *Of course* any proposed law you name will be broken . In a way that's the point because nobody ever makes a law against something that isn't being done, do they? The law might still be on the books long after people stopped doing it but if it wasn't being done somewhere people would never have passed a law against it in the first place. ^_~

1/26/2006 07:06:00 AM  
Blogger speaker-to-animals said...

tanjitall, barbarian, murder and rape are not science. they are basic biological impulse behavior predating language. hard-wired, if you will.
your analogy is baseless.
try again.

and, remember, i am a kzinret, not a kzin. for eons we were only semi-sentient breeders, totally controlled by the patriarch that impregnated us.
our new-found speech and thought sometimes go to our heads.

1/26/2006 07:39:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Pierre, there's nothing to be sorry for. It just seems to me that those that would go and have abortions done would go and have them done regardless. The choice now becomes do they get the procedure done in some back alley or do they get it done by a qualified specialist. Only if the woman has it done in a back alley she might not survive the procedure, or her reproductive capacity might not survive the procedure to function properly. Is that what we really want?

1/26/2006 10:58:00 AM  
Blogger iotm said...

Ho hum, I challenge your arguments, I get insults in response. You complain that "leftists" do this to your authoritarian heroes, yet you're the ones guilty of it, and being completely amoral, you having no concept of universal standards of behaviour, you prefer to live by your code of double standards where everything you do is right and everything the other does is wrong, even if you're both doing the exact same thing.

CBC had a poll yesterday of Conservative voters, only 41% voted for them because they actually agreed with the Conservative policies, which would make the average Democrat in the US scoff them off as "commies". Of course the realm of facts is dead to this lot, science is evil.

I also find it amusing that most of the comments here wreak of teen angst and cynism. Of a fundamental ignorance of how the world works, all you know is yourself. So the question needs to be asked, what's your excuse if you aren't really teenagers? Teens can blame it on their wild changes in body chemistry. What's your excuse?

You also seem utterly terrified of entering into any kind of actual debate with anyone who actually can argue your points effectively. I challenged wretchard to a debate on god, he cowered in fear. I occasionally come across this page, post a comment, and I get insulted. Are you really that insecure in your beliefs that you're afraid to allow them to face scrutiny?

1/26/2006 11:00:00 AM  
Blogger Sloan said...

I'm coming late to this thread, but I think it bears emphasizing that the behavior of the mass of pro-life protesters in zombie's photo essay is the RULE, rather than the exception, in almost all protests of this sort. The bomb-throwers, screamers, and doctor-killers are relatively rare. I base this on my longstanding acquaintance with people in the pro-life movement...they are good and decent human beings who are deeply upset that this issue was decided, not at the ballot box, but by judicial fiat.

1/27/2006 06:11:00 AM  
Blogger Mr.Atos said...

Pardon the delay, but i finally posted my latest installment as inspired by this conversation. I welcome a review.

1/27/2006 12:55:00 PM  

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