Monday, June 21, 2010

More on the Flotilla Attack

This is video produced by the Israeli government giving some important details about the Gaza blockade and the assault on the Mavi Marmara:

The following video contains footage of leaders of the Islamists addressing their cadres as the Mavi Marmara set sail. It seems pretty clear they were looking for a confrontation and were not much concerned with delivering aid to Gazans.

Of course, there will be those who'll say that since the Israelis killed more of their attackers than the attackers killed Israelis the Israeli response was "disproportionate." Maybe these critics have a point. Maybe in the future the Israelis should just allow themselves to be beaten to death with pipes and clubs and stabbed to death with knives and thereby prove to the world that they're not such bad guys after all. Why haven't they tried that, I wonder.

Thanks to National Review Online for the videos.


A Parody of Himself

Lori Ziganto of Hot Air watched the Chris Matthews special on the rise of "The New Right" the other night and found it, well, typical of the sort of intellectual fare that Chris serves his audience every night at MSNBC.

Here's Ziganto's lede:

Last night, MSNBC aired a Chris Matthews special, labeled a documentary, called The Rise of the New Right. I decided to take a quick break from my radical right wing extremist acts like bitterly clinging to my guns and my Bible, whilst fiendishly drawing Hitler moustaches on Obama photos, to watch it. I know. Apparently, I'm a glutton for punishment.

However, while absolutely infuriating, it was simultaneously hilarious and almost took my mind off the distressing shortage of windmills in this country. Almost immediately, two things became rather apparent. Firstly, MSNBC's NewSpeak definition of "documentary" is evidently "blatant fallacies and pure propaganda".

Secondly, it's quite clear that Chris Matthews' leg 'tingle' has moved into his brain, or what passes for some semblance of one. Either that, or he's merely decided to embrace his cuckoo pants. Plus, he's a big, fat liar. I feel no qualms about saying that, since Matthews spent a full hour demonizing me and people like me as violent, irrational racists. In fact, the entire show could be summed up like this:

Racists. Birthers. Guns! Evil scary militia groups that have the same "Don't Tread on Me" flag!!! Chanting "USA, USA" and being fond of the Constitution and, you know, liberty is super scary and ominous. Also, racist. And violence fomenting. Plus, racist.

You see, now Community Organizing is evil and dissent is no longer Patriotic. Instead, that now signifies some sort of marauding mob of nefarious radicals who are doubleplusungood. President Obama said "I want you to talk to your friends and neighbors; I want you to argue with them and get in their faces", but that was okay because George Bush. Or something.

It's not okay when the right peaceably assembles, voicing opinions articulately, in full and coherent sentences and using facts and rational thought, because we aren't supposed to even know how to read! Plus, we don't base things on feel-goody Utopian ideas of kitten whiskers, fairy dust and magical windmills. We sneaky right wing-nuts embrace real world ideas like individual success is a good thing and that people do not need the government to run every aspect of their lives and businesses. Oh, the horror.

If you think her words a little strong you should see the stuff she quotes from Matthews. Anyway, read the rest of her review. It's very good, especially where she rebuts Matthews' fear of right-wing violence.

At one point she quotes a tweet she received that she says sums up the whole show:

JennQPublic summed it up best when she tweeted "If I was writing a parody of a Chris Matthews special, it would sound just like this Chris Matthews special." Exactly. It was almost a self-parody and included every tired, lame, outright false and, frankly, insanely delusional leftist narrative regarding conservatives.

When people have no ideas to offer against their opposition they sometimes seek, by smear and innuendo, to discredit them, and then they complain, as Matthews often does, about our debased political discourse. Perhaps it's time for Chris Matthews to follow Helen Thomas off into the journalistic sunset. What he has left to say that's true is not particularly important or interesting, and what he says that's important or interesting is not particularly true.


Hey, Let's Build More Nuclear Plants

Yet another Green icon has wandered onto the Damascus Road, and the scales that had blinded him to the importance of nuclear power have fallen from his eyes. In this case the icon is Stewart Brand, founder and editor for sixteen years of Whole Earth Catalog. Peter Huber tells the story of Brand's better-late-than-never partial conversion at City Journal.

Here are a couple of interesting excerpts from Huber's account:

"The question I ask myself now," Brand tells us when he gets to nuclear power, is: "What took me so long? I could have looked into the realities of nuclear power many years earlier, if I weren't so lazy."

When he got over his nuclear sloth, here's what Brand learned. (Most of the words quoted here are Brand's own, but some are Brand quoting others approvingly.) "Fear of radiation is a far more important health threat than radiation itself." "Reactor safety is a problem already solved," and the new reactors are even safer than the old. Waste isn't a problem; we need the $10 billion Yucca mountain disposal site "about as much as we need a facility for imprisoning dangerous extraterrestrials."

Nuclear power isn't just the cheapest practical carbon-free option around, but the cheapest, period, when not snarled up in green tape. Scientists "invariably poll high in support of nuclear." The people so pragmatic that they actually keep the lights lit, he might have added, have polled that way for 40 years, on the strength of reams of data and analyses, as well as the operating experience of our nuclear navy and a wide range of commercial reactors scattered across the planet.

It's an indubitable historical fact that the developed world was poised to break free from a carbon-centered energy economy 30 years ago. Greens locked us back into it. By demonizing nukes so effectively, they boosted U.S. coal consumption by about 400 million tons per year. We would instantly cut our coal consumption in half if we could simply conjure back into existence the 100-plus nuclear plants that were in the pipeline three decades ago. If global warming is a problem, Brand and his ex-friends own it.

Yes, indeed. The fear of nuclear power, a fear that was in many ways founded, as many irrational fears are, upon ignorance, has deprived us of an excellent source of clean energy that would have made us much less dependent upon coal to produce electricity.

Now the Greens are pushing for cap and trade, legislation which, by some accounts, will be enormously expensive for the country and the main motivation for which, global warming, has lost its credibility as an imminent danger. When will we learn not to take these people so seriously?

Anyway, on the bright side, the Damascus Road is getting crowded.