And you are there!

January 18, 2011

A 1964 audio recording of President Johnson ordering pants over the phone. It’s… special:

 

via Joshua Treviño

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CNN plumbs new depths in spinelessness

January 18, 2011

…by apologizing for a guest using the word “crosshairs.” I kid you not:

Click the image to watch the video, but here’s the transcript:

“Before we go to break, I want to make a quick point. We were having a discussion about the Chicago mayoral race. My friend Andy Shaw used the term ‘in the crosshairs’ in talking about the candidates. We’re trying, we’re trying to get away from that language. Andy is a good friend, he’s covered politics for a long time, but we’re trying to get away from that kind of language.”

Great. Let’s keep the false idea alive that violent (read: “Right-wing”) rhetoric was somehow responsible for an apolitical nut committing mass-murder at a Tucson shopping center. What’s next, John? Apologizing for showing Sarah Palin’s image, just in case the mere sight of her incites violence? Are you guys going to post a disclaimer with reruns of “Crossfire?”

Just when I thought my nausea-meter for political correctness couldn’t go any higher, CNN finds a way to red-line it.

via Allahpundit


What happens when you start a war and lose it?

January 18, 2011

That’s the question Sara Carter asks about Mexico in the Washington Examiner:

The violent deaths of nearly 35,000 in Mexico in the past four years symbolize a growing crisis for the United States as its southern neighbor is increasingly destabilized by competing drug organizations that have infiltrated every level of government, according to numerous U.S. officials.

President Felipe Calderon’s efforts to dismantle the drug gangs since taking office in 2006 has increased the number of grisly killings without diminishing the strength of the various criminal groups so far, experts said. That has placed U.S. security and Mexican security at risk.

“Mexico needs to take down the major cartel players or ask for our help to get it done,” said a U.S. official who is familiar with operations in the region. “Mexico is at a crisis point, and the situation is getting worse. We are left with an insecure border controlled by drug cartels, and our ability to limit their operations starts on our side. Unfortunately, that’s not good enough.”

There’s no doubt the situation in Mexico is bad and getting worse; as Carter points out, cartel-war related killings have increased 60% in just a year. The border city of Reynosa actually saw the Mexican Army trapped on its base as rival cartels fought a gun battle in the streets. The State Department has warned Americans to get their children out of Monterrey, because of the danger of kidnapping and being caught in a crossfire. Ciudad Mier is now a ghost town — government control is a sick joke. The discovery of beheaded corpses is now commonplace.

And that anarchy is more and more spilling over the border onto our side, most recently in the murder at Falcon Lake, the killing of a Border Patrol agent, and shots fired at a Hudspeth County, Texas, road crew.

Treating it as a law-enforcement matter looks less viable with each passing day. The corruption of local and state authorities in Mexico is notorious — and often fatal to those seeking redress under the law. It’s even a serious problem at the federal level.

And yet, to ask Lenin’s famous question, what is to be done? President Calderon has already involved the Mexican military, with at best mixed results: Mexican Marines, for example, captured 30 gang members in Reynosa,but then there’s that embarrassing incident with the Army. Should Calderon declare formal state of insurrection, give up any pretense of this being a law-enforcement matter, and go to full-scale war? And, to be blunt, is the Mexican state up to the task?

The anonymous US official cited above hints at more than police cooperation between our two countries, yet US military involvement would be controversial, to say the least. Even if it were limited to intelligence and Special Forces assistance, Mexican pride has been sore ever since that little dust-up between us from 1846-48, and any Mexican president openly acquiescing to US military operations on his country’s soil would pay political Hell for his choice, no matter how logical it may be.

But it may come to that, especially if the violence spills over to our side in ways that even Washington cannot ignore, whether directly or from a flood of refugees.

The risk of Mexico becoming a failed state is a serious problem for us, and it is one that has no good answer.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Follow up: how to react to libel?

January 18, 2011

A few days ago, I argued that Sarah Palin was right to respond to the blood libel hurled at her and at the Right in general, that it was not the usual criticisms one could ignore or “rise above.”

At Legal Insurrection, William Jacobson agrees with me, but puts it much better and less heatedly than I:

Palin cannot just ignore the obvious libel against her.  That is the strategy pursued by the Bush administration in the face of false accusations that Bush “lied us into war.”  We saw how that strategy of silence worked.

There is not a shred of evidence to date that Loughner ever saw Palin’s electoral map, yet 56% of Democrats (and 35% of people overall) believe that the map was connected to the Tucson shooting.

This puts Palin in an impossible position, one faced by many people who are falsely accused.

If Palin does not defend herself vigorously, the silence is taken as acquiescence and an implicit admission of guilt.  If she does defend herself, she is criticized for making the issue about her and she further spreads the defamatory accusations (so-called “self-publication”).

(…)

Palin is correct to fight back forcefully against people for whom the truth about the Tucson shooting is just a set of inconvenient facts to be ignored for a false political narrative.

If Palin did not fight back, the slanderers and defamers surely would win.  The truth may not prevail here because of the strength of the Democratic message machine, but it is worth fighting for.

And if you’re not following Legal Insurrection, you really need to fix that oversight, now.