May 1st, 2010

Politics

This would explain a lot.

The Bully Party | The Weekly Standard:Matthew Continetti examines how the Democrats have governed - or, more often, failed to - since 2006. This is pretty typical of New Left behavior since the 1960s, actually, but since the media has chosen to drop all but the thinnest veil of pretended objectivity for the most part, it's been a lot more obvious lately.

I will say that none of my Democratic friends behave like this (to the best of my knowledge), but the people you've been electing to office  are at best enablers of this kind of behavior and at worst, participants in it. I'll give Al Franken (DFL-MN) his propers here: he hasn't been 5% as obnoxious as a senator as he was a comedian. You have to give credit where credit is due.

Also see Continetti's review of Our Dark Lord's memoir, Courage and Consequence.
Politics

A Gadfly, Not A Leader

The Weekend Interview with R. Emmett Tyrrell: The Right's Happy Warrior - WSJ.com: James Taranto gives good interview here with Bob Tyrrell, longtime writer for and sometime editor of The American Spectator. This interview is especially timely, not just because I happen to be reading the collection of his "The Continuing Crisis" columns from that magazine, but because Tyrrell has another book out, After the Hangover, which is well worth reading, doubly so if you buy it through my links, hint hint.

Down the road a bit, I think Tyrrell is going to be viewed in somewhat the same way we now look back at William F. Buckley Jr.: a theoretician, a man of letters, and a gadfly who kept pushing the Right to be something more than it was when he came on the scene. Unlike Pat Buchanan, whose rage at the New Left's domination of the media turned off a lot of people, Tyrrell's mockery of the Kultursmog made people laugh and realize what fools these talking heads and pontificating pundits were (and are). The Spectator has come to represent a different flavor of conservatism than the (generally) social conservative tack taken by Buckley's National Review; it is more populist in its libertarianism and less Catholic, and perhaps this is why it's less well-known than its older brother. Perhaps it's the often more snarky tone, that some people find off-putting, but it's a magazine worth following nonetheless. I'd subscribe if I could afford to.
wombat

You should read this, too.

Saturday Verse: G.K. Chesterton - Maggie's Farm: Maggie's Farm, a blog I thank RS for introducing me to, reprints one of my favorite poems not written by Kipling. It's a stirring retelling of the Battle of Lepanto, one of the pivotal battles in history and another in the series of battles that kept Islam out of Europe and ensured the survival of Christendom, which evolved into Western Civilization as we know it today. For those who want to look deeper into the battle, Victor Davis Hanson has devoted a chapter in his excellent book Carnage and Culture: Landmark Battles in the Rise to Western Power
to it, and if that isn't enough, there's this: Victory of the West: The Great Christian-Muslim Clash at the Battle of Lepanto, which is also most excellent. Buy them both! :)
Politics

This man speaks truth.

Harsanyi: "Immigration" isn't the problem - The Denver Post:

But if you, like me, believe it's possible to advocate for a broad-minded immigration policy — one that creates more expansive guest-worker programs, offers amnesty (though not citizenship) to some immigrants already here and enforces border control — this administration is not making it easy on you, either.

The uplifting tale of the hard-boiled immigrant, dipping his or her sweaty hands into the well of the American Dream, is one thing. Today, we find ourselves is an unsustainable and rapidly growing welfare state. Can we afford to allow millions more to partake?

When the Nobel Prize-winning libertarian economist Milton Friedman was asked about unlimited immigration in 1999, he stated that "it is one thing to have free immigration to jobs. It is another thing to have free immigration to welfare. And you cannot have both."

Dependency programs incentivize not only those who want to work, but those who don't want to work. That's why we need to allow a generous number of immigrants and visitors to take a shot at the American Dream and become part of our economy. I'd just like them to do it on their own and check in first.

Perhaps I'm experiencing an abnormal spasm of quixotic delirium, but I can't imagine most Americans would find a policy that offers both true security and robust immigration very controversial.



This is another way of stating Jonah Goldberg's "high walls, wide gates" philosophy on immigration, which I enthusiastically support. The whole problem with immigration policy of late is that while everybody talks a good game on enforcement at the Federal level (and there are a wealth of laws on the subject dating back to the 1940s) nobody funds it very much until something awful happens - as it did recently. Unfortunately, expecting the current administration to do something about enforcement is dumb like rock. The blacks most directly affected by illegals are so far into the pocket of the Democratic Party they can't see daylight any more, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus is full of the kind of irredentist-pandering Chicano blowhards who fully deserve to live in the kind of violent chaos they'd get if their more deranged supporters' dream ever came true. Sure, the labor movement isn't too keen on the idea of more illegals, but most of the union members in this country work for the government these days, and they no doubt see illegals as a growth opportunity. So if you want to see anything substantive done about border enforcement, and you live in Texas or New Mexico, you better start leaning on your state legislators to do something, if you don't want to wait until 2013.