Thursday, April 5, 2007

College Hijinks

Karl Rove recently gave a speech at American University which made the news because of the antics of some of the protestors. A former student of mine who now attends American and who helped organize the speech, writes to give us his eyewitness account:

I was at the Karl Rove event, and actually, as the treasurer of our chapter of the AU College Republicans, helped to organize it. We found out about two weeks ago that Mr. Rove was able to make it to AU to speak, which is something our VP had worked tirelessly on for a long time. We sent an email out over the College Republicans listserv telling them about the event, because we had limited seating. Of course, afterwards, the protesters et al. tried to claim that we had "not publicized the event." It was on our listserv, which goes out to hundreds of students, and it was on our website. But obviously, we wanted our members [to have] first crack at seats for this event.

Rove's speech ... was extremely entertaining. He had only about 15 minutes of prepared remarks, and then took about an hour of Q and A. He talked about his experiences in College Republicans (he was the national director at one point), campaigning, etc. All in all, it was a good event. The protesters, however, are another story.

Before the event, a group of about 20-30 kids from CASJ (Community Action and Social Justice), which is a loose affiliation of many "progressive" groups, linked arms outside the doors to our event, with signs calling for Rove to be arrested via a citizen's arrest (apparently because of the whole email accounts). Although annoying, they didn't really do anything to disrupt us.

[The accounts were an April Fool's day hoax that many left-wing bloggers fell for, and went ballistic over, until they found out that they'd been, uh, punked, I think is the current expression: RLC]

Afterwards, we went with Rove out the back door of the room we had the event in, which led outside. We heard chanting, which, let's just say, I am sure Rove is used to [from] protesters. He got into his car, but not too far away, separated by a barricade, was a large group (at least 50) students chanting "Go to jail Karl," the f-word, and other things. Then, a bunch of protesters broke through the barricade and laid down in front of Rove's car. Public safety (our campus "police") and Secret Service tried to get the kids up, but the kids didn't move (they went limp, which I guess is what a protester is told to do, because if they touch an officer in any way, that gives the police the right to do what they want to them).

Then, one of the protesters tried to tackle a secret service agent. The protesters deny this, but I saw it less than 10 feet from where I stood. That gave public safety and the secret service the right, then, to start carrying/throwing the protesters out of the way. Rove was able to then drive away.

To be honest, I did not see anyone throw anything at Rove's car, so I don't know how that idea started. Apparently, someone threw a shoe at his car and missed, but I didn't see that.

I was glad we were on national tv last night (O'Reilly and Hannity, of which I only saw the former), but not b/c of something that terrible. I can understand if the liberals hate Karl Rove, but they acted completely childish and immature. Even worse is that several members of the College Democrats executive board, including their President, helped organize the protesting.

A little side story: due to not submitting fund-raised funds from t-shirts and the like properly, the College Dems were temporarily suspended and lost half their school funding that they receive from the University. They have held many fewer events than we have, even though they are larger in numbers, and we are considered the most liberal school in DC. So the joke amongst the College Republicans is that our event drew more College Democrats to it than anything the Democrats have thrown this year.

Sounds like a good time was had by all.


Concentrating Iranian Minds

NewsMax thinks that Iran's mysterious decision to suddenly release the fifteen British hostages was due in large measure to the fact that the U.S.S. Nimitz carrier battle group was steaming toward the Persian Gulf. The Nimitz will soon be the third carrier battle group in the region and this fact, NewsMax believes, served to concentrate the more practical minds among the Iranian elite.

Possibly. The last thing the less fanatic Iranian leaders want to do is to provoke the United States while George Bush is still president. There will be time for provocations after 2008, especially if the Democrats win the election, but Bush, they've probably concluded, is not a man to trifle with.

The Iranians have learned this lesson afresh in recent weeks. Their revolutionary guards exported deadly IEDs into Iraq and suddenly their operatives were being killed and arrested in Iraqi towns, and top echelon people around the world started to disappear off the face of the earth. Bush has taught the Iranians that there are ways to play hardball short of open war and if the Iranians are intent on playing the game they've found that two can play it.

Better for them, the mullahs may have decided, to wait until Bush is out of office before they push hard against the U.S.

An alternative explanation being floated by some is that Nancy Pelosi persuaded Bashir Assad of Syria to persuade Ayatollah Khameini of Iran to release the hostages.

Perhaps. Or perhaps all the Islamist extremists in Tehran have converted to Buddhism and now want only peace, enlightenment and the seven fold path.


Mac v. Pc

Reader Nathaniel liked our post on the Mac/Pc wars featuring Dell's recent escalation of hostilities, so he sent us a link to fifteen short ads Mac has produced. Some of them are pretty funny even if you don't know much about computers and couldn't care less about the skirmishing between Mac and Pc lovers.