from Vulgar Latin *exvigilare : Latin ex-, ex- + Latin vigilare, to stay awake, from vigil, awake

Friday, January 16, 2004

Who would have ever thought I'd report on something before the National Review? A couple of days ago I told you about the BBC's hypocrisy - well, actually Mark Steyn's problem with the Beeb's hypocrisy. Today Denis Boyles takes on the monster. One thing I hadn't realized, though, was that the BBC posts (and it stays) every word from bin Laden.
But accusing the BBC of hypocrisy is unlikely to get Kilroy-Silk off the hook for inciting "hatred" — especially since the BBC, since last January 5, has been posting the entire text of Osama bin Laden's latest call for jihad — the explicit intention of which, after all, is to "incite hatred" as well as murder, suicide bombing, and limb amputation — on its own website, along with the full texts of all other available bin Laden messages.

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Neophyte Pundit has moved, and the new site looks great! Check it out.
Welcome, new Rocky Mountain Alliance members Thinking Right and The American Kestrel. Keeping the Rockies safe.
Lileks' secret is out.
Don't miss Dowingba's description of growing up Canadian - very interesting perspective. Also, leave him a nice comment. He's giving up smoking, and doing an admirable job at not killing us all.

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

I propose that Christian education should be mandatory in public schools. At the very least, students should read aloud from the bible and pray in class. Ridiculous, you say? What if I could get a Federal Court to agree with me? Would I have an argument then?
U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton has ruled that Excelsior Elementary School in Byron, California, is not acting unconstitutionally when it requires students to choose a Muslim name, read from the Quran, pray to Allah, and simulate worship activities related to the Five Pillars of Islam.

...students in Byron were compelled to follow the tenets and teachings of Islam in order to satisfy the requirements of the assignment and make a good grade...

...the American Civil Liberties Union, a group well known for its opposition to religious expression in public schools, has been noticeably silent on the case.
You're probably asking yourself, "Why is the ACLU not creating a fuss here? This is right up their alley!" Well, you'd be right to ask that question - unless the ACLU had a hand in the formulation of those religion-in-the-classroom guidelines, along with a true expert on Islam:
Abdurahman Alamoudi, an alleged senior terrorist operative, is behind bars on an 18-count indictment. But he can take satisfaction in the fact that a court in California has just given the green light to schools following ACLU’s religion-in-the-classroom guidelines, which he helped to formulate.
The most ridiculous part of this is that it is so obvious to everyone except the psychotic left that they are wrong. Go back to my first sentences. Would they be knocking down my door if I tried to push that through the court? Of course they would, and they wouldn't see how that could be considered wrong.

Hat tip to scriptus for bringing these to my attention.

Update: In the interest of fairness, you should read Ed Brayton's reaction to this post. He disagrees with me. Strongly. And he's welcome to disagree. He's also welcome to the extra traffic he'll now see.
I haven't had a good soul-purging rant on the BBC lately, and Mark Steyn (Hat tip, Instapundit) has reminded me that it's long overdue. The Beeb just fired a reporter, Robert Kilroy-Silk, for making
some robust statements about the Arab penchant for suicide bombing, amputations, repression of women and a generally celebratory attitude to September 11 - none of which is factually in dispute - the BBC will yank you off the air and the Commission for Racial Equality will file a complaint to the police which could result in your serving seven years in gaol.
Nice going, guys. What message could be better for your public? Oh, maybe this:
But, if you're Tom Paulin and you incite murder, in a part of the world where folks need little incitement to murder, as part of a non-factual emotive rant about how "Brooklyn-born" Jewish settlers on the West Bank "should be shot dead" because "they are Nazis" and "I feel nothing but hatred for them", the BBC will keep you on the air, kibitzing (as the Zionists would say) with the ¨me de la¨me of London's cultural arbiters each week.
Remember the Telegraph's Beebwatch? For those out of that stream, Damian Thompson wrote a column for the Telegraph
attempting to show how the BBC's output - news, current affairs, drama and, above all, the wretched website - is slanted to reflect the Left-liberal opinions of the majority of its employees.
the big problem with the BBC airing its decidedly "serious problem with objectivity" is that it is essentially a state-funded medium. Remember the fuss caused a few months back when ClearChannel tried to expand? The libs screamed that it amounted to an unfair domination of the market - much like the BBC enjoys. When the Beebwatch started to reported on the hypocrisy of the state media Roger Mosey, the BBC's head of television news, condemned Beebwatch as "mean-spirited". Sounds a bit like our own liberal hypocrites, doesn't it? Thompson no longer writes the article - in fact, the one I've linked to is the last, and it's from last July. He sums it up nicely in his closing paragraph:
That would be acceptable, if the BBC were a subscription-only service for crusading Lefties. But it isn't. The BBC is funded by a tax, and therefore it should be held to higher standards of fairness than those of other news organisations. Let us be generous, and assume that Roger Mosey's grudging comments represent the first green shoots of impartiality. They will mean something only if they bear fruit in changes to editorial policy. Our monitoring exercise is over for the time being - but we are still watching.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

This blog is all of one month old (today!) and I'm already on my 3rd commenting system. This time is Comment This! - a Nik Martin production. Maybe this one will last....
Hat tip to The Anti-idiotarian Rottweiller for this article on Monday's report to the U.N. Security Council (warning, the link is not child-friendly - the original story is here). It seems the Chilean ambassador to the United Nations, Heraldo Munoz reported that:
Nearly 100 countries have failed to enforce U.N. sanctions against the al-Qaida terror network and Afghanistan's ousted Taliban.

Only 93 countries have submitted reports on measures being taken to implement sanctions - less than half the 191 U.N. member states, he said.
I'm sure this is something you're going to hear on the networks, don't you?

Busy, busy day. Must read, though:Sheri Annis on NRO today.
Dean, who prided himself on the McCainiac straight-talk model when he was a long shot, is becoming cautious, even censored. His managers are probably right. He can't keep shooting off his mouth. His verbal missteps (Confederate flag, crazy 9/11 theories, downplaying Saddam's capture, no prejudging of Osama, fumbling a reference to the Bible) are getting him in trouble with everyone but his hard-core groupies. And groupies stick around long after everyone else has left the arena.
As a former musician, the mental picture of Dean and "hard-core groupies" leaves a distinctly unpleasant taste in my mouth. (Hey! I'll use all the mixed metaphors I can get away with!)
I've taken out the Blogspeak code so no one should be getting Javascript errors any longer. No idea when he'll have the site back up - it looks as though he's been shut out of his server. Seems as though someone has been hacking him, so his server probably suspended him to make sure they didn't have problems, too.

I would still like to hear from anyone with an opinion about moving to 1and1, with Moveable type. Use the email address in the upper righthand corner.

No comments, still. Not happy, again.

Been trying to post for a half hour, and Blogger won't let me - 505 errors and the like. I'm in a mood to chuck it and make the move to Moveable Type and 1and1.

Monday, January 12, 2004

As long as I'm on the subject, I can't pass up Ann Coulter's latest. Too good. Let me share:
...about a month ago, the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press released a poll showing that people who regularly attend religious services supported Bush 63 percent to 37 percent, and those who never attend religious services opposed him 62 percent to 38 percent. When you exclude blacks (as they do in Vermont), who are overwhelmingly Baptist and overwhelmingly Democratic, and rerun the numbers, basically any white person who believes in God is a Republican.

The only Democrats who go to church regularly are the ones who plan to run for president someday and are preparing in advance to fake a belief in God.

Dean's epiphanic religious awakening occurred over a bike path –- and that's his version of what happened. He was baptized Catholic and raised an Episcopalian, but left the Episcopal Church in a huff when he finally found his true religion: environmentally friendly exercise.

The Episcopals don't demand much in the way of actual religious belief. They have girl priests, gay priests, gay bishops, gay marriages -- it's much like The New York Times editorial board. They acknowledge the Ten Commandments -- or "Moses' talking points" -- but hasten to add that they're not exactly "carved in stone."
Even if she didn't have so much fun with Dean, I can't help but appreciate her comments on Episcopalians (as a former Episcopalian myself). I know Coulter can be vitriolic more often than not, but that doesn't mean she's wrong!

In today's National Review Online, Doug Bandow presents an interesting piece on the role of religion in politics. Most interesting about this article is the question of whether it should matter if candidates are "genuine believers." Obviously, voters should be concerned with casting their vote for a candidate that is as "serious about living a moral life as president," but a candidate's use of religion during a campaign should be all but ignored. I'm not sure if I agree with Bandow, but he presents a good case. A few highlights:
The Bible sets only general boundaries for political debate. The dominant message of the Gospel, as well as of the Hebrew writings, is man's relationship to God and one's neighbors. The Bible gives much more guidance on how we should treat people in our everyday lives than when we should coerce them, especially through today's secular political order.

In the Old Testament, the government enforced many essentially "religious" rules, and some believers want those same regulations to be enforced today since they are "God's law." In a different country, in a different time, it would be a mistake for Christians who live in a society dominated by nonreligious neighbors to advance civil enforcement of essentially religious strictures. In the United States today, in contrast to the ancient Israelite monarchy, our elected officials govern a disparate people of disparate beliefs. Today's state is designed to promote civil order and public good, not religious faith and individual salvation.

Sunday, January 11, 2004

9:00pm, and I really should start thinking about next week. Remember my excitement over the number 95? Hmm, I feel a little silly now, since the number is now is 192! (did I mention the day isn't over yet?) Wow, truly astounding!

update: 209 for Sunday

After spending some time thinking about a possible move to Moveable Type, I can't really think of a good reason not to move. I'd like to hear from anyone who has recently done the same, with consideration to the fact that I know next to nothing about writing code, and I hear that's important for MT. Thoughts? Please share...
More votes! Hurrah! To add to the ones that I know about: The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiller, Go Dubya!, DiscountBlogger, The Everlasting Phelps, Le Sabot Post-Moderne, BIGREDGIANT.

That's 13!

update: and now the Alliance of Free Blogs joins the fun! By the way, if you don't know this site, this is their self-description:
"Keep your libraries, keep your penal institutions, keep your insane asylums... give me beer. You think man needs rule, he needs beer. The world does not need morals, it needs beer. It does not need your lectures and charity. The souls of men have been fed with indigestibles, but the soul could make use of beer." - Henry Miller, "Make Beer For Man"
Beer here!

I've had several conversations lately about switching to Moveable Type, and an offer like this is awfully difficult to pass up. King of Fools has the details.
We don't hear a lot about Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger lately except what the LA Times chooses to write (in it's own, uniquely distorted kind of way). Confessions of a Political Junkie has a post on the distortion that you should read.
And now I'm a Slithering Reptile #1754, from yesterday's #3004. That's a complete skip over Crawly Amphibian! I'm not sure if I'm evolving or not, but yesterday's numbers sure boosted my averages.
At 5 minutes to midnight, I check my sitemeter and am immediately floored by the number 95. 95 people read my site today - this is truly astounding to me. I thought Saturdays, and weekends in general, were slow, but 95 visits in one day completely blows away anything this little corner market has ever experienced. I thank you all, and you know who you are!

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