Monthly Archives: February 2008

Citizen Journalism In Iran

Via Pajamas Media, a fascinating glimpse of a street uprising in Tehran. Iran’s Modesty Police have been getting more aggressive lately. Last Saturday night, the Modesty Police tried to arrest a young woman at a shopping mall, presumably for dressing in a western style. A young man intervened to protect her, and was beaten and thrown into a garbage can by the Modesty Police. By that time, a crowd had »

Tear down this Walz

Minnesota First District Rep. Tim Walz is one of the Democrats swept into office with the tide in the last election. He is also one of the House Democrats blocking legislation that would preserve the essential intelligence collection authority that was passed overwhelmingly by the Senate. Andrew McCarthy and the Defense of Democracies have led the charge in exposing the hokum advanced by the Democrats to support their utter irresponsibility, »

Soft Power, Part Four

I have tried today to establish a kind of hierarchy of evidence for discerning a presidential candidate’s true beliefs. Voting records are at the top for candidates who have them. Rhetorical flourishes, on the other hand, are virtually meaningless for this purpose. A candidate »

Chinese Fauxtography

It’s no surprise, I guess, that fauxtography is a phenomenon not confined to the Middle East. Today, Chinese authorities admitted that one of their best propaganda photos is a fake. Here is the photo, which was designed to show how a Chinese railroad to Tibet coexists harmoniously with an endangered antelope species: It turns out that the photographer, who initially claimed that he spent eight days lying in a pit, »

U.N. Documents Say Iran Nuke Program Continues

Earlier today in Vienna, representatives of the International Atomic Energy Agency presented documents and data to the agency’s 35-nation board indicating that Iran has continued to pursue its nuclear weapons program: Simon Smith, Britain’s ambassador to the IAEA, said material presented to the IAEA in Vienna came from multiple sources and included designs for a nuclear warhead, plus information on how it would perform and how it would fit onto »

Who’s the Fusion Candidate?

Barack Obama claims to bridge gaps, reach across the aisle, render the old political categories irrelevant. Maybe, but so far there is no evidence for it in the poll data. Check out these Rasmussen numbers (via Weekly Standard Blog): Obama’s numbers are virtually indistinguishable from Hillary Clinton’s. Thirty-four percent of respondents say they will definitely vote for him, but 43 percent say they will definitely vote against him, a net »

Oscar Ratings Crater

This year’s Oscar ceremony had the lowest television ratings on record, with only 32 million tuning in in the U.S. That’s a smaller audience than watched the first American Idol show this year. Part of the explanation is that most of this year’s nominated films were not popular. They were not popular because they were bleak and violent. Hollywood has been losing customers with what I would consider mainstream tastes »

A centrist with no one to his left, Part Two

As I argue below, a candidate’s voting record is the best evidence of his place on the political spectrum, and his rhetorical flourishes should count for little or nothing in this regard. A candidate’s statements on his website rank somewhere in between. In Barack Obama’s case, the website tells the same tale as the voting record, as Examiner columnist Melanie Scarborough shows. »

A centrist with no one to his left

The often sensible Washington Post editorial board came up with a howler yesterday when it argued that, notwithstanding Barack Obama’s ranking by the objective National Journal as the most liberal member of the U.S. Senate in 2007, it is “not clear” whether Obama is “a liberal at heart” or “more of a centrist.” The Post’s main evidence for this alleged lack of clarity is laughable. It notes that Obama declined »

Let’s Hope They Keep It Up

It’s hard not to enjoy the latest dust-up between the Clinton and Obama camps. The Clinton campaign has been circulating a photo of Obama that was taken when Obama visited Kenya in 2006. It shows him in a Somali outfit of some kind: According to Drudge, at least one Clinton staffer circulated the photo with comment, “Wouldn’t we be seeing this on the cover of every magazine if it were »

Ed Morrissey joins Hot Air

Ed Morrissey has announced that he will be closing his influential Captain’s Quarters blog and joining Michelle Malkin at Hot Air. Ed’s move will save me a few seconds each day, since both he and Michelle are part of my regular daily reading. But this is also a good time to reflect on what Ed has accomplished at Captain’s Quarters. Not only does he singlehandedly match, more or less, the »

Anatomy of a smear

Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei purport to explain why conservatives did not look kindly on the New York Times’s report that someone thought John McCain may have had a romantic relationship with a pretty blonde lobbyist ten years ago: Conservative leaders often portray their political mission in moralistic terms: right vs. wrong. But their reaction to a news report that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) might have had an inappropriate relationship »

The Kosovo precedent

Is there anyone in his right mind who really thinks it is a good idea to establish a breakaway Islamic state over in the corner of Europe that lit the match for World War I? According to Soren Kern, the major countries of the Europen Union think it is, up to a point, though Europe as a whole remains passive and divided. David Warren and Caroline Glick both deem the »

Another brick in the wall

Charles Johnson alerts readers to the Reuters story suggesting that Hamas may try to breach Gaza’s border with Israel on Monday. Whatever Hamas does, women and children will of course be leading the way: A pro-Hamas group said it would hold a peaceful protest on Monday in which it estimated that 40,000 to 50,000 women and children would form a “human chain” stretching the length of the Gaza Strip. Organisers »

If You’re Watching the Oscars…

…here is an alternative: a century’s worth of actresses. Personally, I would say that the peak was reached around mid-century, but Paulette Goddard and Catherine Zeta-Jones would stand out in any decade. In my opinion. Anyway, here it is; click on Marilyn: Via Ann Althouse, posting at InstaPundit. We’ve been watching for a while, for no apparent reason, since the only movie we’ve seen this year that was nominated for »

Will Nader matter? Part 2

Watching Ralph Nader on Meet the Press this morning (complete transcript here), it occurred to me that he could conceivably make a difference in the campaign in one respect. He could shed insight into Barack Obama’s otherwise obscure views on the Israel-Arab conflict. Take, for example, this portion of his response to one of Tim Russert’s questions this morning: Senator Obama is a person of substance. He’s also the first »

Will Nader Matter?

Ralph Nader has announced that he will run for President again this year; I believe this is the fifth time, making Nader the Harold Stassen of the Left. To my surprise, Politico thinks Nader’s entry is significant: Ralph Nader announced on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he’ll run as a third-party, anti-corporate candidate for president this fall, which would be likely to drain votes from the Democratic nominee and provide »