Sean's Blog

A Guide To Online
Opinion And Current Events

Friday, February 25, 2005

The economy grew at a rate of 4.4% in 2004.

I blame President Bush.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Democrats? What is wrong with you people? Debra Saunders in the San Francisco Chronicle:
Summers' fourth mistake was that he was reasonable. Before his remarks on women in science, Summers noted that he might be wrong and that he didn't think it was right that there were differences in gender socialization.

If Summers sounded like a deranged, uneducated misanthrope, however, Harvard Yard would be filled with protesters citing the need for -- all bow -- "academic freedom." As it is, rare voices, such as that of law professor Alan Dershowitz, have invoked academic freedom in Summers' defense. But Dershowitz's take is by no means universal. A Harvard Crimson poll of the university's Arts and Letters faculty found that a disgraceful 32 percent of respondents said Summers should resign, while 55 percent said he should not.

Meanwhile, the "academic freedom" lobby has mobilized in support of University of Colorado, Boulder, ethnic studies professor Ward Churchill, who wrote a piece that called the Sept. 11 victims "little Eichmanns inhabiting the sterile sanctuary of the Twin Towers." Churchill later tried to excuse the piece by explaining that he was targeting "people who function in investment and brokerage and trading capacity" because their activities lead to mass misery and death in the Third World.

Apparently, you don't have to be even remotely academic to hide behind academic freedom.

Or could it be that academic freedom only works for those on the left or the far left? Summers already had won ill will among Harvard's left for opposing university divestment from Israel, for questioning the academic performance of African American professor Cornel West (who split for Princeton) and for supporting a return of the ROTC on campus.

Academic freedom for members of the military? -- I guess that would be taking academic freedom too far. After all, it would be wrong for academia to treat reserve officers -- the men and women who protect this country -- as equals. No, the ivory tower is too special for that.

Then, after banning the ROTC, Harvard profs whined that Summers is "dismissive and arrogant" -- as one professor told the Boston Herald. Dismissive and arrogant? If anything, Summers is too accommodating. He keeps apologizing and promising to be more sensitive and a better listener when he ought to be blasting his critics for their intolerant rush to exile people who express unpopular ideas.

My advice to the Harvard president: Don't apologize and promise to be a better listener. Be a man.
You people are out of control.

On a related note, I saw a debate on CNN's Crossfire yesterday or the day before about this very subject. The reason CNN is getting it's ass kicked by Fox News was because on Crossfire all four--all four!--of the people on the show (the two hosts and the two guests) were all in agreement on this one issue and that was that Larry Summers ought not to have said what he did. What did he say? He said men and women are different. That is contrary to politically correct thought and the left seeks to purge all such ideas from public discourse. Unless of course the speaker is bashing America. Then he is, of course, protected by, all together now, academic freedom.

How anyone can be a Democrat in this day and age is completely beyond me. The speech codes alone are too complicated to keep up with.

A German newspaper, Der Spiegel asks the question that has got to be making Democrats and world leftists sweat bullets: "Could George W. Bush Be Right?"
Quick quiz. He was re-elected as president of the United States despite being largely disliked in the world -- particularly in Europe. The Europeans considered him to be a war-mongerer and liked to accuse him of allowing his deep religious beliefs to become the motor behind his foreign policy. Easy right?

Actually, the answer isn't as obvious as it might seem. President Ronald Reagan's visit to Berlin in 1987 was, in many respects, very similar to President George W. Bush's visit to Mainz on Wednesday. Like Bush's visit, Reagan's trip was likewise accompanied by unprecedented security precautions. A handpicked crowd cheered Reagan in front of the Brandenburg Gate while large parts of the Berlin subway system were shut down. And the Germany Reagan was traveling in, much like today's Germany, was very skeptical of the American president and his foreign policy. When Reagan stood before the Brandenburg Gate -- and the Berlin Wall -- and demanded that Gorbachev "tear down this Wall," he was lampooned the next day on the editorial pages. He is a dreamer, wrote commentators. Realpolitik looks different.
There's more:
This, in fact, is likely the largest point of disagreement between Europe and the United States -- and one that a President John Kerry likely would not have made smaller: Europeans today -- just like the Europeans of 1987 -- cannot imagine that the world might change. Maybe we don't want the world to change, because change can, of course, be dangerous. But in a country of immigrants like the United States, one actually pushes for change. In Mainz today, the stagnant Europeans came face to face with the dynamic Americans. We Europeans always want to have the world from yesterday, whereas the Americans strive
for the world of tomorrow.
Amen brother.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

If you opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq, this piece in the Washington Post explains what you were opposing:
"It's strange for me to say it, but this process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq," explains Jumblatt. "I was cynical about Iraq. But when I saw the Iraqi people voting three weeks ago, 8 million of them, it was the start of a new Arab world." Jumblatt says this spark of democratic revolt is spreading. "The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it."
Us evil neocons tried to tell you. We tried to tell you leftists and we tried to tell you Europeans. We tried.

We tried to make you see that Iraq was the first domino and when Saddam was toppled and the worst, most despotic, evil, corrupt, and brutal dictator in the Middle East was deposed then the whole region would be ripe for political change. We tried to tell you that we were trying to bring democracy to that region of the world and you scoffed. You said Arabs didn't know democracy, didn't want democracy and that we were insane for thinking we could bring to Iraq at the point of the gun. Well, we pointed the gun at all the right people didn't we?

You leftists. You Kerry supporting Democrats. You socialists from France, Germany, and other European countries. You make me sick. You should be deeply ashamed for what you tried to do. You tried to stop what is happening in that region and more than a few of you, if you could, would stop it now just so you wouldn't be wrong. Just so you could say, "Hahahaha. You were stupid to even try."

You were on the wrong side of history and we tried to tell you, but you dug your heels in and marched in those protests, angrily argued with friends and acquaintances who supported the war, wrote letters to the editor expressing your opposition, and otherwise did every thing you could vocally and verbally express your vehement opposition to what the U.S. was trying to do in Iraq.

You were wrong.

We never changed our reasons for this war. The reasons included: Saddam's WMD program (If Saddam didn't have WMD then what did he gas the Kurds with? Farts?), his brutality towards his own people, and the need, in light of 9/11, to bring political reform to the Middle East where despotic rule had created the conditions whereby wealthy men felt it necessary to kill thousands of Americans because of the anti-Americanism of their respective governments who sought to deflect blame and cast it elsewhere.

Now we see that political reform is coming to the Middle East and you must live with the knowledge for the rest of your life that you did everything you reasonably could to keep that from happening and to maintain the status quo of Arab despotism.

You were the ones seeking to maintain, that is conserve, the status quo. You were the conservatives while the neo-cons were the ones with the progressive vision. The labels have been switched and you who opposed the war were the true conservatives of Arab brutality and dictatorship while George W. Bush and the neo-cons were the ones demanding a radical rethinking.

We are the progressives and you are the ones struggling in vain to maintain things just the way they were and are. If it were up to you, Saddam would still be in his palaces and his two insane sons would still be on the loose.

Thank God it wasn't up to you.