Thursday, June 30, 2005

Well, last night's event went off quite well (Ken Mehlman, RNC chairman, at the local chapter of the Federalist Society). They had to keep bringing in more seats. At first I thought it'd just be a stump speech, but he ended up being quite in depth, focusing on judges- because it's a lawyer's organization, after all. (When did this male/female thing at the political parties get started? Just wondering.)

The questions weren't bad either, and it got interesting when one kook arose and started screaming about gays in Jerusalem and Pat Buchanan and "Israeli-occupied" territory and how the FBI should be investigating all the Zionists in the US. I guess he thought he was at a Democratic meeting; fortunately, the largely upper-crust WASPy audience was having none of it and booed him down. We conservatives and Republicans don't go for that garbage, thankyouverymuch. Try Howard Dean next time. Mehlman, meanwhile, had a nice snappy response: "Well, if the FBI's going to investigate Zionists, I hope they start with me."

The guy said that he was a "proud Jew" and that he had been foreign correspondent for the Manchester Union-Leader. That state is so full of extremes, and yet we flatter them, making that paper the most important in the country every four years. Ah well. And...but I'm spending far too much space on what was a tiny part of the event. Good times.

Professor McGinnis was there (I welcomed him back to New York), as was Deroy Murdock. I actually spoke to the latter about the new tower design- we agreed it was better than before. He was giving out a list he compiled of Islamic bombings of mosques, along with this excellent piece. Alas, I didn't get to ask the Fabiani honcho what was up with that.

Speaking of the tower, the Times critic doesn't like it. As if I needed more reason to be happy.

Speaking of the Times, this story is...well, interesting. I'd say "funny," but it's not really, especially when you see who Bloomberg called to kowtow to.

As long as I'm linking articles, here are two nice ones: One from the Times of London on Bush, and one from Peggy Noonan on politicians.

In his latest, Mugger really puts the latest "takings" case in perspective. I've seen this attitude ("We'll [re]compensate you! Why not?") elsewhere, but in private industry. You don't like it, leave. Here, you don't have a choice. Seriously, you shouldn't need a reason. "I don't want to" should be good enough for the government. Yuck. (Another NY Press piece on this here. Looks like some people are finally waking up as to which party is on the side of the "little guy".)

Nicest part of getting a haircut is how nicely your tefillin fits after. (Speaking of tefillin, see my comments here.)

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

I really think that reporters should report. But is there, perhaps, room for fact stating? In other words, when someone says something completely wrong, the reporter can chime in afterward to correct it?

Howard Dean: The sky is green.

Reporter: As it happens, it isn't.

I suppose it would be too easy to abuse in numerous ways. Still, when hearing Durbin, on the radio this morning, declare that "Bush is trying to link Saddam Hussein to 9/11," it would have been nice to hear a "Actually, he did nothing of the sort" afterwards.

Anyway, it was a grand speech. Once again, I'm glad I voted for the man- twice. (All qualifiers aside.)

In other news, another MTA grand plan bites the dust. At this rate, we're never going to see a Second Avenue Line, are we? (It's already off the main page.) Newsflash to MTA: We don't need a dome. We don't expect one. Install good old fashioned light bulbs and use the money you save to connect to the other lines. Your job is subways, not architecture.

That said, I'm very pleasantly surprised with the tower redesign. (Also here.)

Friday, June 24, 2005

Barukh Dayan Ha-emet

Nahum Sarna has passed away. A great loss. Say something of his this Shabbat if you can.

Via Menachem (I do hope YU means YUdaica when they talk about this new book).

Of course, speaking of the kikes, they've come out (see the comments).

Speaking of my favorite J-blogs, see my comments here. I'm going to dan the author l'chaf z'chut and assume the rag's editor added the snide comments. But lay down with dogs...

On the other hand, I really don't like sites (not the two above) which have lots of Java. OK, we're impressed. But we'd like to load here. And why, when you stick a CD in a computer, doesn't a simple CD player pop up like it used to? Instead you get all these music download things, which only really work with fast connections. Bleah.

In other news, if Yahoo Mail wants to include headlines, they should update them. I'm getting tired of "Dead passes 1,700 mark." And why 1700? It's making me suspicious.

Finally, are the deaf now the "Deaf?"
The Weekly Standard has a funny parody of Abramoff's latest. But they left out the hilarious last line of the memo, which you can see at the end here.
As to the flag-burning amendment: My big objection has always been that it concedes the Left's point. "Well, yeah, it's allowed under the First Amendment [which may, in fact, be true], which is why we need an amendment to prevent it." This leads us to try to sully a fine document with endless responses to individual cases (most notably abortion) instead of putting the courts in their place.

Of course, here, the law does not say states may outlaw it, it says it is illegal, which is even worse. Federalism, anyone? Of course, that ties in to the whole emiment domain discussion now going on in light of this latest decision. But I see that's more complicated, it seems, thanks to the legal minds at National Review. (Speaking of which: God bless Victor Davis Hanson. And again.)
So apparently, the kikes are upset with Bush over the Gaza thing. Let me say this:

1) To quote Sharansky, you can't expect Bush to be "more Zionist than Sharon." If Arik-savior-of-Israel is so eager to pull out, do you want Bush to be a Kahanist? (Newsflash: No president will ever be a Kahanist, alas.) Sharansky, by the way, has become a victim- a second time- of the Sharon juggernaut, and yet has once again proven himself the better man. A Great Man he remains.

2) It's not like Bush didn't make his feelings clear when he ran. The man has an overly-optimistic view of people, which can be nice, except when you're dealing with loons like the Palestinians (and divine law). He thinks everyone can get along. The kikes chose to ignore him. (Similar to the choices we all make when we vote.)

3) Um, how shall I put this? When I voted last year, I voted to President of the United States! Not of Israel! I voted on issues important in this great land of ours! Why don't these people grow up? (OK, want a parochial reason? Bush's party isn't blaming Israel for 9/11.)

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

You know life isn't so bad when, while you're on your way to Shacharis, a car passes you playing "Dragostea Din Tei"- and after all this time, you still feel like breaking out in a dance.

Speaking of Shacharis: Isn't it odd that certain portions (like at the end) were added just so there could be an extra Kaddish (or two or three or more), and now sometimes Kaddish is added when no one's really saying it because we say those portions?

OK. I'm a big sap. Check out this site.

Not for the easily offended- but laugh-out-loud funny. I wish I could find the page that focused only on old cereals.

I also wish IFilm still had Triumph insulting Jackson fans up. Now he's funny. Check out some of his other stuff there.

A Bad News Bears remake? Has Hollywood completely run out of ideas this summer?

Later, all! Off to a less-cold office tomorrow (perhaps).

Monday, June 20, 2005

Note to self... time you eat Chinese, do it early in the morning, so you can sleep that night.

Well, the bro and sis-in-law are off to Merrie Olde England, after a lovely good-bye weekend (see above). And on the same day, the rabbi hands me, at Shacharit, a letter attesting to my "Israeli" sister's Jewishness. Sniff. They're clearing out, y'all. Keep in touch! Start photoblogging! (And today, I come across a document about flights to Manchester.)

The funniest line to come out of the various bouts of Democratic chutzpah (and outright anti-Semitism) of the last few weeks- you know the drill, say something outrageous and then blame the Republicans when they call you on it (lookin' at you, little Chuckie Schumer)- was RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman's reaction to ever-so-white Howard Dean's remark that the Republicans are "white Christians": "All the people at my bar mitzvah would be surprised to learn they're 'white Christians'!"

I just now noticed that Shavuot fell on 6/13 this year. Wow!

Isn't it funny that the "gossip" pages in Israeli papers are "rechilut"?

Some interesting links:

Ordinary mom and American Gloria Steinem. Sure, and I see "all my friends" in the movies too!

A very cool Tom Cruise. I wonder if it was staged, though.

Do people really find Jon Stewart funny? I've never seen him before I saw this clip. All I see is him beating an obvious point to death, a stunningly inappropriate punchline, and an audience that cracks up for no apparent reason. Jon Stewart moves his head, they laugh. He stands up, they laugh. "There is only one thing in the world worse than playing squash together..."

We rock. We truly do.

Friday, June 10, 2005

"Every new religion needs a symbol."

So Rabbi Dov Levanoni is a member of this new "Sanhedrin," eh? That alone is enough to make me sick to my stomach (and add scare quotes where I otherwise wouldn't have). Straight-armed menorahs and ugly temples in crazy locations (and, God save us, enforced thinking), here we come!