Monday, January 23, 2017

A Clarification From Madonna

When the singer said she's been thinking of "blowing up the White House," she had no intention of following through on her dark and fevered i"madge"inings.

SNL's Tribute to a Departing Obama Is a Real Lulu

SNL bade farewell to its hero a la gushing schoolgirl Judy Geeson saying ta-ta to the teacher she's been crushing on.

Here's my less-than-worshipful version of the original song:
Those foolish days
Of being blind and leading from behind are done.
But in their minds they think that Mrs. C. has really won.
But how do you get a grip when your idol is no longer on the scene?
It isn't easy, so they'll cry.
If he promised to heal and instead he made things so much worse
They still won't see it and will thirst for him: 'To BHO, Come Back'.
The time has come for moving on; he's gone; his time has passed.
And if today it's "America First" it's 'cause he put it very last.
There won't be apology tours and jours of crazy lefty fits of shame.
No Cairo speeches, no more games.
If he did lasting harm by capitulating to some Shias
His fans'll still holler, "Please,
"Please, BHO, Come Back!"

Friday, January 20, 2017

Is Trump's "America First" Shtick Really "Anti-Semitic"?

Yes, I know, I know--harkening back to the Lindberghian is apt to give one pause. But if Trump is such a big anti-Semite, how do you account for this?:
The first orthodox Rabbi to give benediction at a US presidential inauguration cited a psalm highlighting Jerusalem at Friday’s ceremony. 
Rabbi Marvin Hier —  the 77-year-old founder and dean of the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center — said in his prayer for President Donald Trump: “Bless all of our allies around the world who share our beliefs, ‘By the rivers of Babylon, we wept as we remember Zion…If I forget you O Jerusalem, may my right hand forget its skill’ (Psalm 137).” 
Hier was the first religious leader to recite an invocation following Trump’s swearing-in and inaugural address. He prayed that the “Eternal God bless President Donald J. Trump and America, our great nation,” and “guide us to remember the words of the Psalmist, ‘Who may dwell on Your holy mountain? One who does what is right and speaks the truth’ (Psalm 15).” 
The rabbi also reminded the crowd, “The freedoms we enjoy are not granted in perpetuity, but must be reclaimed in each generation. As our ancestors have planted for us so we must plant for others.” 
As Hier took the podium — one of 6 religious figures to recite a blessing Friday — one could hear cheers and chants in support of the rabbi...

Donald Trump Says If His Son-In-Law Can't Negotiate a Peace Deal Between Israel and the Palestinians, Nobody Can

I can understand thinking your son-in-law is a great guy. What I can't understand is this sort of thinking:
If you can’t produce peace in the Middle East, nobody can,” Trump told Kushner, who has been tapped as a senior advisor to the new president. “All my life I’ve been hearing that’s the toughest deal to make, but I have a feeling Jared is going to do a great job.”
To be clear: Jared cannot produce peace in the Middle East. As of now and for the foreseeable future, nobody can.

How I wish that that was how President Trump saw it, too.

Hyperventilating California Politician Fears "Raping and Pillaging" Under Trump

"Raping and pillaging," eh?

I think you're confusing Trump with the jihadis, pal.

Self-Described "Delusional Egomaniac" Stephen Colbert Sums Up Obama Years in a Few Minutes

No surprise that the hero-worshiper is as delusional as his hero.

Same Old Judenhass, But With an Au Courant Anti-Zionist Vibe

Adam Kirsch reveals what it is about Bernard-Henri Levy that drives the French left wild--and not in a good way (my bolds):
The left, in particular, has long despised Lévy, in something like the way it came to despise Christopher Hitchens. That is because, even as he claims to be a socialist himself, he stands for three things that are anathema to the contemporary left. First, he is fundamentally opposed to the idea of revolution; he came to prominence in the 1970s as a spokesman for the “New Philosophers,” a group of young thinkers who rejected the violent revolutionary fantasies of French Marxists and Maoists. Second, he advocates an interventionist foreign policy in defense of humanitarianism and human rights—most recently, he supported the NATO action in Libya. Since at least the Iraq War, if not earlier, this idea has been scorned by the left as a mere fig leaf for Western imperialism, and a recipe for international chaos (with Libya as a case in point). And third, Lévy is a committed Jew, who places Jewishness and the state of Israel at the heart of his political and intellectual identity.
This is particularly significant in a French context, because in recent years Alain Badiou, often considered France’s greatest living philosopher, has helped to turn anti-Judaism into an intellectual point of pride. To Badiou, and his epigone Slavoj Žižek, Judaism is the enemy of utopianism; just as Jews denied Christ, so Jewish liberals today deny the transcendent dimension of the revolutionary Event. The only good Jews, according to this school, are the ones who reject solidarity with other Jews and turn themselves into revolutionaries and pariahs, like Spinoza and Marx. In particular, this form of left-wing anti-Judaism demands hostility to Israel as a token of liberation from Jewish particularism.
I wouldn't say that that sort of thinking is exclusive to France. It pretty much describes leftist thinking vis-à-vis Israel in North America and the rest of Western Europe, including the U.K., too, does it not?

(As an aside, doesn't the piquant phrase "Badiou and his epigone Slavoj Žižek" sound like the name of a French art house movie?)

The "Progressive" Two Step: Introduce Fear of the "Other" to Smother Jews' and Gays' Legitimate Concerns About Muslims

Bruce Bawer unpacks a typical mainstream media article--this one from the Christian Science Monitor--which can't bring itself to criticize any aspect of Islam or those who practice it (for to do so would be "Islamophobic"), preferring instead to chide Muslims' victims:
Now, any honest reporter faced with all of the above data would be obliged to acknowledge that, yes, Islam preaches the murder of gays and Jews and that members of those groups in Europe are aware of this fact and are acting out of sheer self-preservation. Period. 
But the mainstream media can't allow itself to admit these facts and leave it at that. So it muddies the waters. [CSM scribblers] Llana and Micner did so in a familiar way. The “far-right” parties, they charged, don't really believe in freedom and human rights, and don't really care about gays' or Jews' well-being, but are, on the contrary, nests of bigotry – including homophobia and anti-Semitism. Why, then, are these parties welcoming Jews and gays into their ranks? According to Llana and Micner, it all came down to two words: window dressing. They're taking in Jewish and gay members, you see, only because those groups' support for them allows the parties to pose as non-bigoted “[e]ven as they feed on” – wait for it – “the fear of the 'other.'”  
Ah yes, that useful concept: “fear of the 'other.'” Llana and Micner, as we've seen, had already made it perfectly clear that Jews and gays have a very good reason for fearing Islam. But by bringing in the postmodern concept of “fear of the 'other,'” they deftly swept all sense away and turned the whole thing around. For the entire concept of “the other” is tied up, in contemporary academic discourse, with what is meant to be regarded by all and sundry as the thoroughly ugly history of Western imperialism – the colonization of various non-Western corners of the earth, and the cruel subordination of the almost invariably dark-skinned natives of those places to their white European conquerors. Let it be understood, moreover, that for one of today's academics to reduce a social or political situation to a distrustful encounter between “self” and “other” is to suggest that the former view themselves as civilized and view the “other” as a bunch of savages.  
By introducing the notion of “fear of the 'other'” into their article, then, Llana and Micner were pulling a swift one, implying that these “far-right” parties' counter-jihadist positions are based not on a legitimate concern about Islamic prejudices but – presto change-o! – on Western prejudices against Muslims that are rooted in nothing other than Islam's alienness and unfamiliarity. Never mind that Llana and Micner had already established that Islam has long since ceased to be an alien or unfamiliar phenomenon in most of western Europe; that native Europeans have, in point of fact, been exposed to it for more than a generation now; that the overwhelming majority of them have had close encounters with a great number of Muslims; and that they have witnessed, with growing alarm, the dire impact of Islamization on almost every aspect of their lives, their communities, their cities, and their countries. Never mind, in sum, that their concerns are rooted in cold, harsh reality. 
Harsh reality? I have yet to meet a "progressive" who is willing to take that on. More often, those who purvey the "fear of the 'other'" bollocks prefer to dwell in the land of delusion, a place where there's no jihad, and Muslims and Jews can luxuriate in their collective sense of "otherness".

Update: This bit from the article linked above is a prime example of delusional--and suicidal--Jewish "progressive" thinking (my bolds):
The conference was “a gesture toward the possibility of a Jewish-Muslim relationship in this country better than the one we have,” Dr. Kurtzer said. 
“We’re trying to be at the frontlines of reimagining Jewish-Muslim relations in this country, and we’re doing so as an avowedly Zionist organization,” he continued. “That makes it hard for some in the Muslim community to participate; that’s no secret. In the paranoid culture we’re in, it makes some people think that we’re not serious about our Zionism. From our perspective, one can love the State of Israel and feel that we’re more effective in building the strength of the Jewish people, by building relationships with others who don’t share that commitment. 
“We are an anti-litmus-test institution,” he said. 
Mr. Kurtzer lamented the “tragedy” of bringing the conflict in Israel to America. “I believe it’s possible to have a serious relationship to Israel without becoming proxy warriors for a conflict seven thousand miles away,” he said. There’s no reason, he said, that arguments about Israel should blow up friendships between Muslim and Jewish high school students.
Not me. I'm a pro-litmus-test sort of person. And if you can't pass the litmus test of accepting Israel's right to exist, I have no interest in being your "friend."

And, yes, there are some Muslims who do pass the test--Professor Salim Mansur, for example.

He "gets" it. Mr. Kurtzer, alas, not so much.

And BTW, Mr. K., it wasn't "Zionists" who brought "the conflict in Israel" i.e. the war between the Jews and jihadis, to America. It was the jihadis. In NYC (site of your schmooze-a-thon) on 9/11/11. At Fort Hood. In Boston. In San Bernardino. In Orlando. You see, much as you and the other schmoozers would love to live in your American bubble, a place where you think you're safe, you can't: the jihad, which is global in scope, won't allow it.

And, no, that isn't me just being--now, what was that word you used again? oh, yeah--"paranoid."

"Holocaust Selfies"

It's a thing, apparently, and there are those who--no fooling--like to haul out the old selfie stick and pose all pouty-lipped during a visit to what was once a Nazi death camp.

An Israeli takes issue--big time--with their narcissism and levity.