Friday, November 30, 2007

Re: Sudanese Orcs

Kelly asks a good question about Islamic outrage over the Teddy bear named for Mohammed on our Feedback page. Meanwhile, the teacher who allowed her students to name the bear was sentenced to fifteen days in jail and is to be expelled from Sudan.

The savages are not happy with the sentence, however:

Thousands of Sudanese, many armed with clubs and knives, rallied Friday in a central square and demanded the execution of a British teacher convicted of insulting Islam for allowing her students to name a teddy bear "Muhammad." In response to the demonstration, teacher Gillian Gibbons was moved from the women's prison near Khartoum to a secret location for her safety, her lawyer said.

The protesters streamed out of mosques after Friday sermons, as pickup trucks with loudspeakers blared messages against Gibbons, who was sentenced Thursday to 15 days in prison and deportation. She avoided the more serious punishment of 40 lashes.

They massed in central Martyrs Square outside the presidential palace, where hundreds of riot police were deployed. They did not try to stop the rally, which lasted about an hour.

"Shame, shame on the U.K.," protesters chanted.

They called for Gibbons' execution, saying, "No tolerance: Execution," and "Kill her, kill her by firing squad."

That she was put in prison at all is an outrage although being expelled from Sudan is surely a great blessing.


Cure For Big Egos

Stefan links us to this video which takes the viewer through a size comparison of various celestial bodies. It gives a whole different perspective to life on earth and shows how microscopically puny our world and its inhabitants really are.

There are some other videos on the same page which are also pretty impressive.


More Media Bias (Yawn)

CNN hosted the Republican debate Wednesday evening and, through either incompetence or appallingly bad journalistic ethics, utterly squandered whatever credibility they had as an objective news organization. No less than four of the people they had ask questions of Republican candidates were Democrat plants and one was even a Hillary campaign worker.

It's hard to imagine CNN allowing Republicans to ask questions of Democrat candidates and it's just as hard to imagine them allowing Republicans to represent themselves as "undecideds" when in fact they aren't undecided at all. Indeed, it's also hard to imagine CNN allowing Democrats to be subjected to any of the questions that were asked of the Republicans the other night.

Michelle has the goods.


Morris Defends Huckabee

Dick Morris was Mike Huckabee's political advisor in the early nineties so he knows him pretty well. He argues that, contrary to a lot of the sniping at Huckabee for being a tax and spend populist, he really is a fiscal conservative:

A recent column by Bob Novak excoriated Huckabee for a "47 percent increase in state tax burden." But during Huckabee's years in office, total state tax burden - all 50 states combined - rose by twice as much: 98 percent, increasing from $743 billion in 1993 to $1.47 trillion in 2005.

In Arkansas, the income tax when he took office was 1 percent for the poorest taxpayers and 7 percent for the richest, exactly where it stood when he left the statehouse 11 years later. But, in the interim, he doubled the standard deduction and the child care credit, repealed capital gains taxes for home sales, lowered the capital gains rate, expanded the homestead exemption, and set up tax-free savings accounts for medical care and college tuition.

Most impressively, when he had to pass an income tax surcharge amid the drop in revenues after Sept. 11, 2001, he repealed it three years later when he didn't need it any longer.

He raised the sales tax one cent in 11 years and did that only after the courts ordered him to do so. (He also got voter approval for a one-eighth cent hike for parks and recreation.)

He wants to repeal the income tax, abolish the IRS, and institute a "fair tax" based on consumption, and he opposes any tax increase for Social Security.

Huckabee is gaining momentum because he appears to be one of the few genuine social conservatives in the race. If he turns out also to be a fiscal conservative he will be a force to be reckoned with in the Republican primaries. It remains to be seen, though, what his detailed position on illegal immigration is. On that issue very few candidates find themselves in harmony with the electorate and it could prove to be the undoing of more than one of them.

The rest of Morris' column can be read here.