Saturday, May 31, 2008

It's Walt Whitman's Birthday

"Here are the roughs and beards and space and ruggedness and nonchalance that the soul loves."
-preface to the Leaves of Grass.

Here's another Whitman gem:

The true government is much simpler than is supposed, and abstains from much more. Nine tenths of the laws passed every winter at the Federal Capitol, and all the State Capitols, are not only unneeded laws, but positive nuisances, jobs got up for the service of special classes of persons.
Who knew that Whitman was an anti-government libertarian?

Friday, May 30, 2008

Not "O Superman" but "O say can you see.."

O Laurie Anderson, let me sing your praises! Deconstructing the national anthem...

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Where there's smoke, there' s fire!

Are terrorists-in-the-making just sitting ducks in Europe? Strategy Page thinks so.
The Europeans have been far more successful at finding and arresting Islamic terrorists than their American counterparts. Part of that is because there are ten times as many Muslims in Europe as there are in the United States, and it's much easier for Islamic terrorists to get into Europe (mainly because the homelands of Islamic terrorists are close). Another reason is the tendency of American Muslims to integrate into their communities more than is the case in Europe (where governments have long encouraged migrants to maintain their language and culture.) Thus U.S. Muslims are more likely to report any suspicious activity. For this reason, even before September 11, 2001, al Qaeda warned terrorists operating in the United States, to avoid American Muslims. The greater integration into U.S. society also means American Muslims are more economically successful than their peers in Europe. It's the unemployment and sense of helplessness among European Muslims that causes so many of them to become Islamic terrorists.

There are al Qaeda fans in the United States. Some are just young, or not-too-bright. But others are older and smarter and dedicated to the goals of Islamic radicalism. It's just that there aren't that many of them (the FBI won't say exactly how many, just that the number is growing), and apparently they are carefully monitored. But if a few of these lads go unnoticed, for too long, there could be another terror attack.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Wishing the senior senator well

Hell knows we aren't fans of the senior senator from Massachusetts. But we wish him well. The AP is reporting that Sen. Kennedy was rushed to the hospital this morning around 8:30. His situation was deemed serious enough to transfer him by helicopter to Mass. General according to radio reports.

Decency from the loyal opposition requires such sentiments.