Epic Nation

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Bush's pick

The president will be announcing his choice for O’Connor’s recently vacated Supreme Court seat tonight. The chattering classes immediately started claiming that they had it on good authority that he would be choosing Edith Brown Clement. Well, all that’s changed now and the talking heads of the MSM now have it on good authority that Clement is not the president’s choice.

Leave it to so-called mainstream reporters to report as “news” the fact that they have zero clue of what’s going on. Waiting for Bush’s announcement later in the evening is just too much to ask of these tools considering the entire profession suffers from Attention Deficit Disorder.

But if everyone’s playing the guessing game, I’ll go with Edith Hollan Jones.

Here's what Renew America has to say about Judge Jones:

Judge Jones has openly criticized Roe v. Wade, condemns "modish, untested philosophical notions" imposed by the Supreme Court "that would have left the [Constitution's] Framers aghast," and believes that the Framers' principles of limited government and personal virtue were derived mainly from the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule. In January 2003, she told a University of Virginia audience that the nation's foundational values were Biblical.

Jones is critical of the legacy of the Warren Court, which she contends "extravagantly assumed the power to dictate new 'rights' not expressly stated in the Constitution and in so doing foisted its philosophical vision on the United States with consequences far beyond the Court's imagining."

Among areas Jones believes the activist Supreme Court has damaged American society are crime and punishment, pornography, family relations, public order, and youth and education.

Concerning the decline of religion, morality, and self-government in American society, Jones told a group of law students at the University of Texas in 2001, "I am hopeful that with the debacles of the twentieth century, we can recover the original intentions of the framers of the Constitution."

If I'm right, and Bush picks Jones, this is going to be one hell of a summer. I'm already looking forward the Left’s hyperventilating reaction; it should be entertaining. Besides, it will be nice to keep up with real news for a change. This Rove nonsense was old the first day it was reported on.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Must be that Viking blood...

A Swedish citizen who was held hostage by terrorists in Iraq for 67 days has vowed revenge on his captors. Ulf Hjertstroem, a 63 year old banker, has put a bounty on the heads of those “bastards” who kidnapped him:

"I want to take them out of the game," Ulf Hjertstroem, a 63-year-old oil broker who had lived in Baghdad for 14 years, told Expressen. […]

"I have now put some people to work to find these bastards ... I invested about $50,000 so far and we will get them one by one[.]"

This is the sort of talk I would expect from a Texan, not a Swede. I have to say I’m impressed by this man’s confrontational attitude. I’m sure he’ll be facing some harsh criticism from the pacifist wimps in the Swedish media/”intelligentsia.”

Hat tip to AYD

US denies the UN control over the Internet

Here’s some good news:

A unilateral decision by the United States to indefinitely retain oversight of the Internet's main traffic-directing computers prompted concerns Friday that the global telecommunications network could eventually splinter.

This issue has been getting little attention in the press, but in the last few years there has been an ongoing campaign on the part of internationalists to wrest control of the Internet’s domain name service – basically the master directory for the web – from the United States. And who, pray tell, would manage the Internet’s most essential of services?

The United Nations, of course.

A notable detail that should give people pause for thought is that China has been the most ardent proponents of this plan at the UN. Just imagine China, those champions of free speech who have implemented a country-wide firewall to keep Chinese citizens from gaining access to unfiltered news and information on the Web, having a hand in managing the Internet with the depots over at Turtle Bay.

Right now IP address allocation is managed by a non-profit organization based in the US; the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). Opponents of ICANN claim that if the agency doesn’t surrender their control to some international body the Internet will fracture into several networks. But the prospect of a splintered Internet that they raise to create fear, I would raise as an argument to keep ICANN in place.

If there are countries/organizations that believe ICANN shouldn’t have sole control over the Internet’s management, then by all means, they should create a new network. If ICANN is so deficient, let Internet consumers and providers go flocking to a new Net. What’s there to fear but competition?

Personally, I trust the market is more than satisfied with ICANN’s stewardship of the Web.

Justice O'Connor resigns

I fear a blood bath.

UPDATE: The ink has yet to dry on O'Connor's resignation and the headline over at the NOW website reads:

Justice O'Connor Resigns... Women's Lives on the Line

Got hyperbole?

Thursday, June 30, 2005

About that "white Christian party"

I realize I'm a little late on responding to Howard Dean's claim that the Republican party is a "white Christian party". But I was thinking of another comment Howie made:

"I hate the Republicans and everything they stand for," former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean told Democrats gathered at a Manhattan hotel, in quotes picked up by the New York Daily News.

It doesn’t take a logistician to make the following deduction, but if Dean hates the Republicans and everything they stand for, and the Republican party – according to Dean – is a “white Christian party”, then it could be said that Howard Dean hates white Christians and everything they stand for.

So there you have it folks, the chairman of the Democratic National Committee proclaiming he loathes Christians and everything they represent. Nice job “reaching out” to those red states Howie.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Bait and switch

Karl Rove made some comments to a group of New York Republicans on Wednesday basically contrasting the philosophical precepts of liberals and conservatives. The remark that has Rove in "trouble" was reported in NewsMax as follows:

"Liberals saw the savagery of the 9/11 attacks and wanted to prepare indictments and offer therapy and understanding for our attackers." Conservatives, he said, "saw the savagery of 9/11 and the attacks and prepared for war."

This had Democrats - including Senators Clinton and Schumer - throwing a tantrum; asking for an apology and/or resignation from Rove. While I felt the Democrats reaction was a bit whiney, I was scratching my head over why the heck Rove made the comments.

There is no spontaneity to Karl Rove. Everything he does is part of some grand design, so he does not slip up by using ad hoc rhetoric. But I was miffed with his comments because I felt that Democrats were finally feeling some heat over Durbin’s comments on the Senate floor. So why the heck would Rove want to give the Democrats any dirt to sling back at us?

Putting aside the fact that Rove’s comments were 100% accurate, I now suspect his remarks are part of a broader strategy. There is an endless catalog of Democrats publicly disparaging our efforts in the war on terror and the troops. But Republicans have so far been kept from beating Democrats to a political pulp with their own words because they have successfully buffered themselves with the “how dare you question my patriotism?” defense.

But instead of employing this reliable – though passive – defense in confronting Rove's claim, the Democrats got a little too cocky, stepped up to the proverbial rhetorical dais, and challenged the veracity of Rove’s charges. They have effectively solicited a debate on this issue, and opened themselves to the litany of evidence against them. A complete review of every treacherous comment made by the left since 9/11 is now fair game.

Karl Rove: Genius.

Greatest American

I'm watching the Greatest American on Discovery Channel right now. Just had to comment on the fact that Randy Jackson - not Michael's brother, but of American Idol fame - is sharing the panel with Ann Coulter and Dennis Miller. Sure, Miller and Coulter are no sages of our time. But Randy Jackson? You've got to be kidding me.

Randy Jackson is touting Martin Luther King Jr. as the greatest American, which is perfectly fine. But I have to imagine the supporters of MLK's candidacy are feeling a little let down that Randy Jackson is their primary representative on this program. His placement on the panel is so asinine that I question the motives of the show's producers. Were they trying to handicap MLK's candidacy by placing this moron on the panel to defend him?

Thursday, June 23, 2005

GOP plays politics with US constitution

First off, I would like to begin this post by explaining why I've neglected my blog lately. I spent the last month going through the evaluation/approval process for my master’s thesis. Now that my paper’s fate is out of my hands, I have some more spare time for updating my blog. Let the blogging commence!

It appears the GOP has forgotten its conservative roots and has decided to play barefaced political games with the US constitution:

The GOP-led House voted 286-130 on a measure Wednesday that would give Congress authority to ban desecration of a U.S. flag. Its prospects aren't good in the Senate, but Republicans could still get what they want — an issue that divides or even conquers Democrats in the 2006 and 2008 elections.

I doubt I need to defend my patriotic bona fides, but if anyone is wondering, I do not condone the burning of the US flag and if I witnessed such an act I would probably have to bite my upper lip to keep myself from misdemeanor assault charges. However, I respect the constitution a far deal greater than the stars and bars, and therefore could not disagree more with the Republicans in congress on this issue.

The political gamesmanship here is not difficult to decipher. The GOP is trying to put Democratic members of congress on the record for voting against a flag burning amendment. The Dem's would be cornered; trying to placate their base by voting against the amendment would disgust moderates. As tempting as this is, it's an incredibly myopic strategy for the GOP.

This amendment process, if it continues, will leave the GOP reeking of hypocrisy. How can a party of so-called constructionists expect to be taken seriously if we are willing to chip away at the very rights we claim to champion? The next time we deride the left for its attempts to curb freedom of speech/expression we won’t have a moral foundation to stand on.

Sure, burning the flag is a horrible act. But so long as no persons or property are harmed in the process, it should be covered by the First Amendement. In a perfect world I would expect that every American would respect and cherish the flag and what it represents. But if amending the consitution is the only route to meet that end, I'll pass.

The GOP will not always be the majority party (I know, hard to imagine). If we tinker with the constitution to win a couple political points and silence those who offend us, who knows what the opposition will cook up in the future to settle the score.

If some imbecile is so incapable of engaging in public debate that their only recourse is to buy and burn an American flag, then that should be their right. Pity the poor dumb bastards? Yes. Amend the constitution to infringe upon their right to free expression? Absolutely not!

Sunday, May 29, 2005

France votes "Non" to EU constitution

France votes down EU constitution. AP reports:

PARIS - French voters rejected the European Union's first constitution Sunday, early government results showed a stinging repudiation of the ambitious, decades-long effort to further unite the continent.

With about 83 percent of the votes counted, the referendum was rejected by 57.26 percent of voters, the Interior Ministry said. The treaty was supported by 42.74 percent, the ministry said.

This is huge news with immense repercussions. In short, France has just surrendered (hehe... need I make the obligatory French surrender joke?) all influence they had in the EU. No matter how the media tries to spin this, it's a huge loss for French elites and the European "social model" envisioned by the continent's leftists. I don't have the energy to write on it now, but stay tuned.

Sixième République?

Friday, May 27, 2005

Socialists create revenue source with new anti-piracy laws

Sweden has finally adopted laws that bring the country into compliance with the European Union Copyright Directive. Sweden is home to the bulk of copyright law offenders in Europe. One of the largest file sharing applications (DC++) operates a majority of its server hubs within Swedish borders. The Local reports:

Sweden on Wednesday passed a law banning the sharing of copyrighted material on the Internet without payment of royalties, in a bid to crack down on free downloading of music, films and computer games.

The law, which was approved by a large majority in parliament, will go into effect on July 1st. Those who violate the law will be ordered to pay damages.

The law is all well and good, but as is the case with most legislation written by the socialist cranks in Sweden, it goes a step too far:

More controversially, the new laws also make downloading unauthorized copies of copyrighted material illegal, and they impose levies on blank media of SEK0.0025 per megabyte for recordable discs and SEK0.007 for re-recordable discs.

Uhg... I could vomit. The tax doesn't sound like much when it's broken down to a per megabyte basis - especially to American readers who have no clue what the Swedish Krona (SEK) is worth - but this tax is ridiculous!

Let's break it down considering the 50 pack of 4.7 GB (4700 megabytes) recordable DVD's I have sitting on my desk. The disks are not rewritable, so I will apply the lower of the two taxes: (4700 * .0025) * 50 = 587.5 SEK. At today's exchange rate that works out to $79.95! Considering I paid $13.99 for this pack of 50, that's a 570% tax.


I guess this explains why the laws in Sweden are so sexually permissive; otherwise the entire parliament and department of taxation would be sitting in prison for fiscal sodomy. Besides, it's not as though the tax makes any sense. The flawed logic behind this law is so typical of socialists. When will leftists realize that taxing the hell out of law abiding citizens does nothing to prevent criminal behavior?