Friday, December 17, 2004

 

Goodbye Christmas?

Charles Krauthammer is quickly becoming one of my favorite columnists and pundits. Again, with this piece, he hits the nail right on the head.

Some Americans get angry at parents who want to ban carols because they tremble that their kids might feel ``different'' and ``uncomfortable'' should they, God forbid, hear Christian music sung at their school. I feel pity. What kind of fragile religious identity have they bequeathed their children that it should be threatened by exposure to carols?

I'm struck by the fact that you almost never find Orthodox Jews complaining about a Christmas creche in the public square. That is because their children, steeped in the richness of their own religious tradition, know who they are and are not threatened by Christians celebrating their religion in public. They are enlarged by it.


Read the whole article, it is excellent.

 

Good For D.C. - Pay For Schools, Not For Baseball

Taxpayers tired of footing the bill for stadiums. Thank god the DC city council came to their senses. Hopefully this will be a growing trend across the country. Just like with the domestic spending disaster we have now, we need to stop bankrolling corporations (including athletic franchises) with taxpayers money.

The broken deal is a reflection of a growing revolt around the country: People don't want to pay for sports palaces. They don't want to subsidize the construction of wealthy owners' places of business any more than they want to subsidize the building of a bank. Sure, baseball provides entertainment and notoriety for a city. So do restaurants. But you don't see chefs with their hands out at city council meetings. No one is buying the ''economic revitalization'' line anymore. D.C., like Miami, is a poor city with more important needs -- schools rather than corporate, write-off luxury suites; libraries rather than locker rooms; parks rather than $20-per-space parking lots. Remember what Miami Arena was going to do for Overtown? How come a developer and an NBA star were the ones who paid for the community center out of their own pockets?

The Marlins are stuck in negotiations for a stadium adjacent to the Orange Bowl. City and county leaders want a guarantee that the inevitable cost overruns on the $420 million project will be covered by the team. The Marlins, unwilling to put up additional money and praying for $30 million from the state legislature, flirted with Las Vegas just in case anyone forgot they can call the moving vans.

New York City is debating whether to build a $1.4 billion football stadium for the Jets. Taxpayers would pick up about half the tab.



 

This Could Be W's Greatest Domestic achievement

Bush Considers Domestic Spending Freeze Just when conservatives have started complaining about Bush's liberal tendencies on the economic front (I guess they forgot about the tax cuts), W comes out with what we have all been waiting for. The domestic budget has grown every year for at least the last twenty years. Any story about budget cuts regarding domestic spending in the past ten years are false. The liberals have long made it a ploy to call a decrease in the percentage increase, a cut. That is to say that if your budget was increased by 10% last year and this year it will only increase by 5%, that is called a cut by the libs (despite your budget actually increasing). A domestic spending freeze will allow the congress to take real stock of the budget and decide if the federal government needs to be paying for midnight basketball. I'm sure if this freeze happens we will be treated to all sorts of stories about people who can't make it because the government can't help them any more. Just remember that for every starving baby, there is a new statue or an artist getting paid to paint or a scientist getting paid to study why the sun is so hot. The point is that we need to reign in domestic spending, use our money where it is really needed and let the people take care of each other rather than making every little problem in to a new government program.

 

We Need More Teachers Like This

Principal is put on leave in alleged handcuffing.

The principal of a St. Louis charter school was placed on administrative leave Wednesday as an investigation continued into allegations that a 5-year-old pupil was handcuffed.

Sam Morgan, principal of Thurgood Marshall Academy, told a reporter this week that he wanted to "scare this kid straight" when he asked police to help teach the boy a lesson. He said the kindergartner had major behavior problems.

Good for Sam Morgan. His chicken sh-t school board placed him on administrative leave. This is the kind of kid who takes 50% of a teacher's time every class leaving the remaining half of her or his time to the other thirty kids in the class. To make matters worse, parents have become so quick to defend their little hellians that kids are not even afraid that mom or dad will find out about their getting in trouble. When I was in trouble for fighting at school, I knew that whatever the principle could dole out for punishment would not even be close to what I was going to get at home. No today though, parents want to skirt their responsibilities as disciplinarians and leave that up to the schools - only they don't really want the schools to do it their kids, just somebody else's.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

 

Green Bigots International

Thomas Sowell writes an excellent column calling out all hypocritical environmentalists. Anyone who has ever had a conversation with a vegetarian wearing leather shoes can relate to Sowell's article. I will never forget the conversation I had with some part-time vegetarians. I asked why they were vegetarians (I always let people off the hook who reply that they just don't like meat or that they are on a diet and trying to cut back on fat), they replied because of cruelty to animals. Soon afterward, they found out that two steak dinners had been made for them and there were no more vegetarian plates. They decided to eat the meat since it was already made, when asked about the contradiction they replied that anything they could is better then nothing. I replied that animal cruelty and murder must be OK sometimes - at least when it is inconvenient for them. That was a conversation killer to say the least. Oh well, who wants to talk to hypocritical liberals anyway, they will just drive you crazy.

 

Chevy Chase Joins Dixie Chicks

Chevy Chase's potty-mouthed Bush-bashing at Kennedy Center I've seen Vacation, European Vacation, Christmas Vacation, Fletch, spies Like Us and The Great Outdoors at least a hundred times each. I haven't seen poor Chevy be funny or make a good movie in quite a while. With his political mouth shut, Chevy is a likeable comic - albeit no longer funny. With his mouth open he is a hateful elitist liberal straight out of the Hollywood liberal's dugout. Chevy embodies the hate which is the basis for the liberal platform. Hate for rules. religion and the idea that the average person in this country is actually smart enough to run their own lives. While Chevy is no Dick Cheney, funny how this story received no attention in the media whatsoever. Now the group that hosted the washed up Chase, People for the American Way, cannot be held directly responsible for his remarks, they can be held responsible for the round of applause after he called the president a dumb f--k. Examples:

He deployed the four-letter word that got Vice President Dick Cheney in hot water, using it as a noun. Chase called the prez a "dumb (expletive)." He also used it as an adjective, assuring the audience, "I'm no (expletive) clown either. ... This guy started a jihad."

Chase also said: "This guy in office is an uneducated, real lying schmuck ... and we still couldn't beat him with a bore like Kerry."


By the way. The List: idiotic celebrities who I formerly liked prior to their absurd rants regarding politics. The list includes Dixie Chicks, Will Ferrel, and Tim Robins.


Tuesday, December 14, 2004

 

1,000-win club gets new member: Olson

Thank God for Lute Olson. If there is a fountain of youth, let's hope that Olson has found it and drinks from it daily.

Monday, December 13, 2004

 

Why Academia Shuns Republicans - A Skewed Liberal View

This liberal times article, er - I mean L.A. Times article tries to defend the choke hold the liberals have on college professorships. As with most liberal writers, the elitist attitude oozes from nearly every sentence of his work.

Am I the only person who fails to understand why conservatives see this finding as vindication? After all, these studies show that some of the best-educated, most-informed people in the country overwhelmingly reject the GOP. Why is this seen as an indictment of academia, rather than as an indictment of the Republican Party?


In other words: "How stupid are all these people that they can't see that my college professor friends and I are so much smarter than those dumb old republicans?" This is right out of the liberal elite playbook - insult the people you are trying to bring over to your side so that they will feel so dumb and you will feel so superior and they will do whatever you say. Only problem is that they alienate everybody with this angle - so smart and yet so elite.

In another paragraph, not only does the elitist claim to know the inner motivations of a majority of the electorate he also infers by contradiction that conservatives are against living "the life of the mind." In other words, conservatives are too dense, and too preoccupied with money to appreciate deep thought.

The main causes of the partisan disparity on campus have little to do with anything so nefarious as discrimination. First, Republicans don't particularly want to be professors. To go into academia — a highly competitive field that does not offer great riches — you have to believe that living the life of the mind is more valuable than making a Wall Street salary. On most issues that offer a choice between having more money in your pocket and having something else — a cleaner environment, universal health insurance, etc. — conservatives tend to prefer the money and liberals tend to prefer the something else. It's not so surprising that the same thinking would extend to career choices.


Here is the truth. I have spent approximately eleven years in higher education. I have an undergrad degree, post-baccalaureate classwork, a master's degree and an M.D. I have been a student and a teacher throughout my years. I have met and gotten to know professors in the arts, social and basic sciences. Overwhelmingly, these academics were liberal democrats. They speak openly in lectures, labs and libraries about their politics. Dissenting views are routinely shouted into oblivion by their herds. They truly feel superior to nearly everyone on the planet. They believe that their existence of seeking knowledge and teaching while taking home very little salary makes them some sort of intellectual martyr. The truth is that universities are all small socialist societies. Their existence is predicated on money from the government. Even the "private" colleges could not survive without the government funded student loans. Grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Science Foundation, and the National Institutes of Health drive research and help pay for salaries. The rest comes directly from the good 'ole taxpayer. Professors take sabbaticals of months at a time to expand their minds. They are put on "tenure tracks" which amount to teaching the classes nobody want to teach and having to produce a certain amount of research and publications or face firing. None of the research or publications are possible unless those pre-professors bring in grant money to the institution. Grant money is routinely put into the university general fund and is redistributed - part to the bringer of the money and part to others who could not talk some government group into giving them money. Sounds liberal/democrat/socialist to me.

It is doubtful that the average university faculty will change in time. The model of the university - funded by the government, existing in a communal setting - is the dream of every liberal. But as long as the hope for great achievement looms past the diplomas, the George Bushs of the world will continue to be elected by the people who know that while education is important, it is certainly no replacement for ambition and hard work.

Sunday, December 12, 2004

 

Campus Liberals Lead Extremism for the Democrats

George Will writes an excellent essay in the continuing series of authors looking at the domination of college campuses by liberals. The idea that when like minded people congregate together, the extremes of their ideas become mainstream is an interesting take on why campuses keep getting more liberal.

This gives rise to what Bauerlein calls the ``false consensus effect,'' which occurs when, due to institutional provincialism, ``people think that the collective opinion of their own group matches that of the larger population.'' There also is what Cass Sunstein, professor of political science and jurisprudence at the University of Chicago, calls ``the law of group polarization.'' Bauerlein explains: ``When like-minded people deliberate as an organized group, the general opinion shifts toward extreme versions of their common beliefs.'' They become tone-deaf to the way they sound to others outside their closed circle of belief.


As a college republican/conservative, my first (and only)college job was in a chemistry lab. Day in and out we used reason and logic built upon facts and made conclusions to discover scientific problems. Certainly these same people would use those same methods when looking at politics and economics. To my shock, I found myself working amongst nearly all democrats. The same strict methodologies used to solve complicated scientific questions was thrown out the window in lieu of emotional politics couched in desires of personal gain and prestige through the next big government grant or state funded pay increase. Academic positions are all funded, in large part, by government program money. This keeps the academic world at the mercy of the government, just like the millions of people who believe they could not survive without the government program du jour. The academics are not stupid, they won't bite the hand that feeds them and will continue to push for bigger government, higher taxes, and more pay for professors. They will also continue to use their influence on 18 to 21 year old college students to try to increase the number of liberals in the voting community. I, for one, could see right through most of these professors and it turned me away from liberalism even more. Given the last election, I'm guessing that didn't happen to just me.

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