Tuesday, February 8, 2005

We Report, You Decide

Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe has a problem with some of the tactics employed by female interrogators at Guantanamo Bay on Muslim prisoners, and Debbie Schlussel thinks he's off his rocker.

We think that both of them are partly right, but read both articles and see what you think.

Is Killing <i>Fun</i>?

Adventures With Chester has a ton of background on the now famous LtGen Jim Mattis who shocked the delicate sensibilities of the fragile flowers in the MSM by stating that he enjoys killing people who beat up women for not wearing a veil (and presumably people who behead innocent captives and people who trick Down's Syndrome youngsters into conducting suicide missions to blow apart other children, etc).

We wouldn't put it quite the way LtGen Mattis did, and in fact we are prudish enough to think that killing should not be "fun" under any conditions. It should be undertaken only with deep regret that it's necessary. Having said that, however, we do not deny that there is something deeply satisfying about justice, and though it should not be regarded as fun, there is, no doubt, a large measure of satisfaction to be taken from knowing that one has removed from the planet someone who preys on innocent women and children and who kills wantonly. Taking the lives of such individuals is an act of justice, it is the right thing to do, and there is nothing reprehensible in LtGen Mattis finding satisfaction in the doing of it.

Anyone interested in this story should check out Chester's site.

Ideological Flip-Flop

Back in the early fifties William F. Buckley defined conservatism as standing athwart the juggernaut of history shouting "stop." We thought of this the other day and marveled at how things have changed.

Consider this little quiz: Of the two, conservatism or liberalism:

1) Which is more likely to be "reactionary"?

2) Which is most likely to oppose reforms designed to protect the common man?

3) Which is most likely to protect the fat cats?

4) Which is most likely to oppose deficit spending?

5) Which is most likely to impede individual liberties?

6) Which is most likely to oppose measures to free oppressed peoples from tyranny?

If you answered "conservatives" for any of these then you're still living back in the sixties with Ward Churchill:

1) Contemporary liberals have no plan or ideas for Americas future except to keep us from moving beyond the same threadbare socialist nostrums that emerged in the thirties and blossomed in the sixties and seventies.

2) Conservatives support Bush's proposals for reforming tax law, tort law, and social security. Liberals oppose all three. Conservatives also met serious liberal resistance in the nineties when they pushed for education and welfare reform.

3) Liberals will support no reform which works to the economic detriment of their deep-pocket donors in the legal profession.

4) Traditionally liberals reveled in deficit spending. Now that the Bush administration is spending more than the government is taking in liberals would have us believe that they've transformed themselves into parsimonious misers.

5) For the last thirty years Liberals have been the most radical opponents of genuine freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and the freedom to bear arms. No challenges to any of these freedoms have come from the Right in decades.

6) The opposition to freeing people from tyranny in Afghanistan and Iraq comes primarily from the Left. The loudest calls to pull out of Iraq now and leave the Iraqis to the tender mercies of al Zarqawi and the circling hyenas in Damascus and Tehran are coming from the Left.

It might be argued that liberals don't oppose the ends that conservatives seek, they merely disagree on the best means to get there. Yet they offer no alternative proposals for achieving those ends. Everywhere we look we find liberals doing nothing, offering nothing, except resistance to change. Their sole contribution to the issues of our time is to stand athwart history shouting "stop."

The Other Side of the Story

The other day we posted and commented upon a story which appeared in the WSJ by David Klinghoffer about the reaction at the Smithsonian Institute to an article on Intelligent Design which appeared in a journal edited by a research associate at the Smithsonian. There were some allegations made in that story which reflected poorly on the open-mindedness and ethics of Smithsonian employees.

Now one of those employees has come forward to present another side and to address some of Klinghoffer's allegations. His remarks can be found at The Panda's Thumb. Evidently, somebody in this dispute, intentionally or not, is misleading us. We'll let you know where the truth lies if, and when, we find out ourselves.