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Archive for July, 2009

IT’LL GET YOU BUSTED … AND A BEER

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 30, 2009

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

We have finally made it.

We have finally entered the long-awaited “Post-Racial” era in the United States of America – the era of colorblindness envisioned by the likes of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. – where character is central to how we judge our fellow man. This is (coincidentally enough) synonymous with the coming of the Obamacratic Age – a new Messianic Age – where harmony and understanding finally sit at the foundation of American society, particularly among grey-haired pony-tail types, aging angry blacks, and members of academia. It is the time when both sympathy and trust abound. (Indeed, peace shall guide the planets while love steers the stars).

Today, in fact, at the White House, President Obama – the Post-Racial President, the Unifier, the One – will be hosting what is being billed as a “teachable moment” as he brings together white Cambridge, Massachusetts police office James Crowley and black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. for a glass of beer and a slice of understanding.

Officer James Crowley

Officer James Crowley

Whether Crowley and Gates will be helicoptered in or will simply balance themselves on the shoulders of President Savior as he water-shuffles onto the south lawn is unclear, but media coverage of the event should displace all other news stories for a good five to six hours – even pushing aside the latest on the month-old death of Michael Jackson. (Yes, he is still dead).

The police officer (who acted “stupidly,” according to the President’s initial evaluation of the situation, void of facts and full of crap) and the professor (angry that he wasn’t instantly recognized as one of planet’s most important academics, only to blame it on racism) will hopefully clear the air, mend fences and put a pretty bow on the latest Obama photo-op. After all, what kind of “Post-Racial” America is this if white Americans and black Americans can’t come together to agree that the United States is full of bad white Americans?

And that goes for their institutions, too!

It ought to be a hoot.

There will be so much for them to talk about.

Sadly, however, the one person that really ought to be at the big powwow today – and will not – is Lucia Whalen.

Remember her?

Lucia Whalen

Lucia Whalen

She played a fairly important role in this over hyped, overplayed, non-story that only became newsworthy because a relic black professor, bitter that the Cambridge Police Department asked for his identification instead of his autograph, made it so. It goes without saying that if Gates had never screamed “racism” after being asked to produce identification, there would not have been a piece of newsprint small enough, or a slice of bandwidth narrow enough, to accommodate an event as painfully routine and extraordinarily uninteresting as this.

Whalen is the one who placed the call to 9-1-1 that brought the police to Gates’ residence after he and his driver were seen breaking into the house.

Since then, Whalen has been ostracized, scrutinized and abused almost everywhere – from the leftist end of the blogosphere to the mainstream alphabet channels. She has been picked apart, her motivations dissected, her character questioned, and flat-out been branded a racist simply for doing what any reasonable human being would have done given the circumstances. She saw something that was, at the very least, an unusual event and, at most, a felony – and she’s been paying for it ever since.

Beating me to the punch, Roger Simon at Politico commented on this White House “shunning” of the widely reviled Lucia Whalen before I had the opportunity to finish this piece.

He writes:

She will not get a beer with the boys. Lucia Whalen has not been invited to the White House.

The three amigos — Henry Louis Gates Jr., James Crowley and Barack Obama — will throw back some cold ones on the South Lawn on Thursday as the whole world watches this “teachable moment” on race in America.

And they deserve a drink. They have been through so much! How they have suffered!

In reality, only Whalen, the woman who called 911 on July 16 to report a possible break-in at the Cambridge, Mass., home of Gates, acted responsibly from beginning to end in this whole affair.

And she doesn’t even get a free drink out of it.

Whalen never used the words “black” or “African American” in her 9-1-1 call. In fact, except for a dubious description about one of the men possibly looking Hispanic (after being asked to describe the men), there was absolutely nothing in her call about race or ethnicity.

Simon is also incorrect on one point.

Having read the police reports, heard the comments from the parties involved, and weighed analysis from law enforcement officials who are familiar with the accounts and details of the incident, I am convinced that Officer Crowley did precisely what he was supposed to do. He did act responsibly, following proper procedures in responding to a possible breaking-and-entering call.

In this instance, I refuse to be one of those “both-sides-could-have-handled-it-better,” mushy-in-the-middle, lightweight, friend-to-everyone peace makers.

The truth is the truth.

Gates was in the wrong – not for locking himself out of his own home, but for behaving like an ass when the police arrived to protect that home. Ultimately, his foot-stomping got him arrested … and a trip to the White House for a beer.

Meanwhile, Lucia Whalen – the vigilant citizen – is under fire.

Eric at the Great Vocal Minority blog writes:

This morning Ms. Whelan, on the verge of tears, went on nationwide television and delivered a public statement defending herself against what is nothing other than a modern-day tarring and feathering.

Only in “post-racial” America does a woman who did absolutely nothing wrong have to do this. Whoever has leveled such charges against her no doubt adopted their sick ideology from hate-Whitey liberals like the Harvard professor. And it is of no small significance that Gates is a friend of our pathetic hate-Whitey president.

I am embarrassed for Cambridge, for Harvard, and for the president of the United States, who I consider personally responsible for flaring this story up into a national debacle.

The transcript of Whelan’s 911 call is right here and there is not a single racist remark made in the whole thing. Whoever has done this to her should be ashamed of themselves. They are no different from the 88 loathsome Duke Professors who wrote and still for the most part defend their letter smearing the Duke lacrosse players.

It is a sad irony that an innocent bystander trying to do the right thing has been the target of more hateful racist remarks in a few days than Henry Louis Gates Jr. has probably had to endure for many years.

Had he even been remotely subjugated to the kind of “racism” he claims he had to brave at the hands of the Cambridge Police Department at any point in the last, say, fifteen or twenty years, is there anyone alive who honestly believes America would not have heard about it in grizzly detail by now?

He’d already have created at least two documentaries on “Black Hatred in Modern America.

He might even have a telethon.

Of course, this is not to claim that racism has been erradicated in America.  Belief in a flat Earth hasn’t been erradicated in America, let alone racism.

I would submit, however, that Americans like Professor Gates are far more likely to experience everyday, run-of-the-mill, normal human “unpleasantness” due to the disposition of others and the routine nature of human interaction than racism.

Welcome to the “Post-Racial” United States.

And by the way, Officer Crowley’s integrity was not only brought under fire on a national level, he was roundly insulted by an uninformed, quick-to-twitch President of the United States for doing his job “stupidly.”

Mr. President, you know what you can do with that beer.

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Posted in Obama Bonehead, politics, Pop Culture, Racism, social issues | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

ORGANIC NONSENSE?

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 30, 2009

organic-food

For some, this may be a tough one to swallow – pun somewhat intend – but according to a “major study” released yesterday, organic foods are no healthier than “regular” off-the-rack, enviro-unfriendly, pesticide drenched foods.

From Reuters:

Researchers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said consumers were paying higher prices for organic food because of its perceived health benefits, creating a global organic market worth an estimated $48 billion in 2007.

A systematic review of 162 scientific papers published in the scientific literature over the last 50 years, however, found there was no significant difference.

“A small number of differences in nutrient content were found to exist between organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs, but these are unlikely to be of any public health relevance,” said Alan Dangour, one of the report’s authors.

“Our review indicates that there is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority.”

This also in … DDT saves lives, water is wet, temperatutes fluctuate naturally, and Mike Farrell is beyond annoying.

Posted in environmentalism, Junk Science | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

QUICK MORNING THOUGHT – WHY THE CBC?

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 29, 2009

William Lacy Clay Jr.

William Lacy Clay Jr.

As I attempted to negotiate the contents my cereal bowl this morning, favoring the little marshmallow pieces over the less-delicious (and frankly boring) “regular” pieces, it occurred to me that I cannot stand the fact that there exists a Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) in the United States Congress.

On Capitol Hill, where the virtues of a colorblind society are constantly extolled, there exists a group of people who maintain (and defend) a racially segregated committee to the exclusion of all except blacks – and almost no one dares say a damn word about it.

Is this not definitionally racist?

Why does this committee exist?

And why are not more people, in the name of the precious equality that leftists believe is the most important American value, demanding that this group be abolished?

Is it because American blacks require a group of leftist, race-obsessed, victimization hounds to tend to their needs?

Are these men and women of the CBC not charged with the task of representing Americans in their respective districts, regardless of their race, creed or ethnicity?

In this day and age, how can such a group exist?

It is beyond despicable because this entire sham has absolutely nothing to do with representing black Americans.

Recall two years ago that Democrat Steve Cohen from Tennessee, a white man, attempted to join the CBC because he was elected to Congress as a representative of a majority black district. He was flat out denied because of his skin color. The “needs” of American black citizens suddenly weren’t as relevant when their representative was not “one of them.”

Disgusting.

Congressman William Lacy Clay Jr. of Missouri was as clear as one could be:

“Quite simply, Rep. Cohen will have to accept what the rest of the country will have to accept – there has been an unofficial Congressional White Caucus for over 200 years, and now it’s our turn to say who can join ‘the club.’ He does not, and cannot, meet the membership criteria, unless he can change his skin color. Primarily, we are concerned with the needs and concerns of the black population, and we will not allow white America to infringe on those objectives.”

Simply charming.

Are there any people more racist than leftists? Are there people more consumed with skin color than those who profess to want a genuinely colorblind society?

Okay, back to my toast.

Posted in politics, Racism | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

SHE’S ALMOST THERE

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 28, 2009

She's on her way

She's on her way

She hasn’t made it yet, but it’s just a formality now.

Judge Sonia Sotomayor will be the newest member of the United States Supreme Court.

Earlier today, she cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee by a vote of 13-6.  (All Republicans voted “no” except one. Care to guess which one gave the Constitution a good swift kick in its manhood?)

The Senate confirmation vote will make it official next week.

The phrase “goody-goody-gum-drops” immediately comes to mind.

E-mails from liberal friends have been filling my “inbox.” I even let a buddy borrow one of the “hip-hip-hoorays” I had stashed away for a special occasion. I knew I wouldn’t be using it.

I celebrated the news by dislodging a pebble from the garden hose and reloading the bathroom tissue dispenser in the upstairs bathroom.

(I’m out of control, I know).

Indeed, I only wish Sonia Sotomayor well and a long life.

I mean that.

This afternoon, radio newscasts were filled with reports of Sotomayor’s committee approval – as they rightfully should have been. It was, after all, newsworthy – as it would have been for any nominee who moved on to a full Senate vote.

As expected – within twenty seconds of every newscast I happened to ingest – the significance of Sotomayor being the “first Latina” to make it to the high court became a focus of the story. Like taxes and death, I could have bet the deed to the house that the word “Latina” would have been the money word for the day and not worry a damn bit about winding up homeless.

Having worked in news, I understand why her ethnicity in this case is noteworthy.

However, it doesn’t change the fact that I am sorry it is so.

Why?

Because I couldn’t give a mongoose’s nipple what ethnicity Sonia Sotomayor is.

My concern is how she views the Constitution of the United States – whether she sees it as a document created by the Founders with very specific intent, with every word in place by design, steadfast and unwavering (save for the amendment process), or whether she views it as something with lungs that is wholly adaptable to whim and folly.

Today’s approval only made the replacement of one “living and breathing document” liberal with another that much closer to being a reality.

The culture from which Judge Sotomayor comes from, the shading of her skin, the blood that runs through her veins and the neighborhood where she grew up are of less interest to me than the tag in my t-shirt neck.

The nominee who said, “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life,” concerns me.

The nominee who holds that the Constitution of the United States does not protect the right to keep and bear arms against infringement by state and local governments scares me.

The nominee who ruled that racial statistics are more relevant than merit angers me.

True, Sotomayor’s appointment doesn’t swing the court into darker liberal shadows since it is effectively a replacement move, but so what?

This is a matter of qualification.

As Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions said, “In speech after speech, year after year, Judge Sotomayor set forth a fully formed, I believe, judicial philosophy that conflicts with the great American tradition of blind justice and fidelity to the law as written.”

Exactly.

Incidentally, did anyone mention that Judge Sotomayor will be the very first Hispanic member of the Supreme Court?

Interesting tidbit, isn’t it?

Posted in Liberalism, Supreme Court, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

A MOVEMENT, HE SAYS

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 28, 2009

Nebraska State Senator Bill Avery

Nebraska State Senator Bill Avery

Go Nebraska!

There are too many who conveniently forget (or are simply ignorant to the fact) that thirteen sovereign states gave birth to the federal government, not the other way around. The original thirteen states were not arbitrary divisions created by a national governing body to accommodate the fledgling plans of the Founding Fathers. Rather, what were in essence thirteen little nations came together over two centuries ago to create a system of government built on the nation’s founding document – the Declaration of Independence – that would secure the blessings of liberty as well as recognize and respect the sovereignty of each of those unique states. Thus, each of the thirteen states would be able to maintain its character and independence without the fear of a far reaching too-powerful central government meddling in its affairs.

There can be no doubt that the states would not have ratified the Constitution otherwise.

That system – federalism – as spelled out in the Constitution, would create a government with specifically enumerated powers, limited in its influence over the sovereign states, yet with just enough power to be effective as a governing body over a single nation.

Ingenious, really.

The first ten amendments to that Constitution detail the limitations of that federal government in respect to the liberty of the people.

There is no ambiguity in the Constitution’s Tenth Amendment:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

It’s a fairly simple premise.

So what on God’s green earth does this have to do with Nebraska?

Martha Stoddard of the Omaha WORLD-HERALD BUREAU writes:

At least three Nebraska lawmakers want to send a message to the federal government:

Butt out of state business.

Next year they will see if a majority of their colleagues agrees.

The senators are working on resolutions asserting Nebraska’s sovereignty under the 10th Amendment of the Constitution.

Nebraska wouldn’t try to secede from the union under their proposals but would go on record objecting to federal laws that they say go beyond constitutional authority.

“My goal here is to shine light on the fact that the federal government is overstepping its bounds,” said State Sen. Tony Fulton of Lincoln. “We would be making a statement on behalf of Nebraska.”

As Stoddard points out in her article, such an action would be predictably dismissed by critics as silly symbolism or political posturing.

Nebraska State Senator Tony Fulton

Nebraska State Senator Tony Fulton

Typical of today’s liberal is to ignore the substance of any given debate – particularly when the facts are against them – and respond instinctively with ad-hominem attacks and knee-jerk aggression, complete with character-assasinating “ist” labels and game-breaking “isms” as a means of keeping up. Because leftists largely formulate public policy as an extension of their emotions, it is archetypical to mask their inability to be substantive by summoning the indignation of the constituency. Thus, if words like “racism” and “sexism” can somehow worm their way into the discussion, the playing field is not only level again, but the game has actually tipped decidedly in favor of the leftist. After all, once one of the no-no “isms” are thrown out there and attached to one of those short-sided “strict constructionist” types, the contest is all but over.

Sprinkle in a few choice words and phrases like “civil rights,” “equality” and “segregation” and victory is assured.

Take State Sen. Bill Avery of Lincoln who, according to Stoddard, said the Nebraska proposals sound disturbingly similar to the states’ rights arguments made in defense of racial segregation and laws blocking blacks from voting.

“The history of this movement is rife with racism in the name of states’ rights,” he said. “I’m not saying that the people making the case now are racist, but I don’t think Nebraska needs to be getting in bed with these kinds of resolutions.”

See how efficiently it is done? Without saying it, he said it. It is tactic that has become second-nature to leftocrats across the board.

Today’s liberal could find a way to spark a heated race debate over a bowl of oatmeal.

Avery made it perfectly clear that he was not – repeat not – calling anyone a racist.

No, of course not.

It was the furthest thing from his mind. Yet, somehow – with the ease of a beggar holding out his hand, or President Obama apologizing for the evil deeds of America – Avery managed to squeeze it in, just to remind everyone that he didn’t think that way, but that others might.

And please note Avery’s use of the word “movement.”

To Avery, the concept of “state’s rights” is not a Constitutional one. Rather, it is a “movement” – perhaps like the anti-nuclear movement, or a “Save the White-Nosed Monkey Squirrel” movement – outside of the mainstream, fostered by wackos, synonymous with racism. To him (and many like him), if one happens to believe in what the Founding Fathers created here – in the original intent of the Constitution – then one is caught up in a “movement.”

What does that make the Constitutional Convention of 1787? A sit-in? 

Is the Declaration of Independence a well punctuated “gripe list?”

It’s impossible to make this stuff up and have it sound believable.

But that’s what modern liberalism is all about … to make the implausible, the unsustainable, the undoable, the unworkable, the unsuccessful and the unthinkable a reality.

Oh yes, and one other thing … State Senator Tony Fulton, who prompted Avery to make his “racial” remarks by pointing out that the federal government was overstepping its bounds in Nebraska, is a man of Asain descent.

Avery, a college professor, is white.

Isn’t the irony delicious?

Posted in American History, Conservatism, Constitution, History, politics, Racism | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

PICTURE OF THE DAY FOR JULY 25, 2009

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 25, 2009

Either one's okay

Either one's okay

 

Posted in Picture of the Day | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

BAM AND THE PROFESSOR

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 23, 2009

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

And now the President has weighed in.

Admittedly, he doesn’t know all the facts, but he is familiar enough with the case to place blame with the authorities.

How could it possibly be anything else?

The police in Cambridge, Massachusetts, he said, acted “stupidly” in last week’s arrest of Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. – who happens to be black. (Such a wordsmith, that Bam). In fact, according to the Chief Executive of the United States, blacks and Hispanics are still singled out unfairly for arrest in this nation. (I’m glad he cleared that up).

There’s nothing quite like having the most powerful man in the world throw police officers under the bus for doing their jobs.

Hopefully, the President was afforded the opportunity to dry his soaking wet feet (from all that water walking) before he inserted them squarely into his mouth last evening.

No one likes to speak with an excessively wet tongue.

Yes, there is much one can draw from the vast well of emotion and knee-jerkism that impels modern liberal thought – confusion, non sequitors, rhythmic bumper sticker slogans, suggestions on how to live a “green” life, how to punish the rich, and so on.

And among those things least likely to be found in almost any leftist contention is good old fashioned down-to-earth reasonability.

In the matter of Mr. Gates’ arrest – and in reading some of the articles on the subject over the past few days from left-leaning sources – one would have to come to the conclusion that if two unfamiliar people wearing backpacks are seen breaking into a home, that it is perfectly all right to assume they are doing something wrong – that is, unless they’re black. In those instances, reasonably suspicious behavior – like trying to force entry into a house – should be approached differently. The history and sensitivities of an entire race of people should play a determinative role on how such a situation is handled.

That’s because liberals see everything branded with the very labels they claim they want to see removed.

Perhaps even more outrageous to today’s liberal is the idea that police actually respond to – and deal with – situations without racial bias. To lefties, prejudices against nonwhites are simply hard-wired into many cops. Sure, those who call the cops may or may not be acting on personal biases, but police officers who respond to those calls are almost always predisposed to racial bias.

Or so it would seem.

Forget the fact that in this day and age – the era of wretched political correctness and hyper-victimization – where Americans are regularly reminded of the racial sensitivities of minorities (thanks to such wonderful initiatives as Sensitivity Training courses and the constant bombardment of multiculturalism at school), it is now intrinsic in law enforcement officials to carefully weigh almost every action and word for fear of being labeled racist. Set aside the reality that this country is the least racist and most accommodating on Earth, and that the men and women of law enforcement overwhelmingly bend over backwards to avoid situations where racism could even be considered a factor in any action.

It’s insignificant to crusading leftists clinging to relevance. There are battles to be fought – even battles that have been won already.

In an age where useless yet somehow influential human debris like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson continue to be given importance, big corporations (in fear of being strong-armed by the blackmailing likes of Jackson), law enforcement agencies, small businesses, and media types continue to run scared at the prospect of these race-baiters causing them any trouble.

Gates being arrested. Note the black police officer in the foreground.

Gates being arrested. Note the black police officer in the foreground.

So what precipitated this latest tedious excursion into liberal regressiveness?

What is this Gates thing all about?

Henry Louis Gates Jr. was arrested at his home in Cambridge, Massachusetts on July 16th for disorderly conduct – charges that were dropped a couple of days ago – after he broke into the house he had been renting from Harvard University. Mr. Gates is considered a prominent black scholar – not to be confused with simply being a prominent American scholar – and has been on the faculty at Harvard since 1991. He is, unquestionably, an accomplished man. Upon returning home from a trip to China, where he was working on a documentary, he found that the front door of his home was jammed. He called upon his driver to help him try to force it open. It was at that point that a neighbor woman, who obviously did not recognize the two men, called the police to report what the overwhelming vast majority of people would consider reasonably suspicious activity – two men apparently trying to bust into the home.

It isn’t exactly a routine event.

Gates eventually got into the home through a back door.

When police arrived, Gates was asked to show his identification and proof that he lived there – a completely reasonable action.

It was at that point that Gates did what any consummate, learned scholar would do under the unusual circumstances – he refused. He then accused the police – specifically Officer James Crowley – of being racist.

(See Crowley’s police report).

“No I will not!” he yelled, when initially asked to produce identification.

“You don’t know who you’re messing with!” he exclaimed, according to Officer Carlos Figueroa in a separate corroborating report.

“This is what happens to black men in America!” he bellowed, heard by many.

Melissa Trujillo of the Associated Press writes:

Police said Gates was arrested after he yelled at an officer, accused him of racial bias and refused to calm down after the officer demanded that Gates show him identification to prove he lived in the home.

Gates’ lawyer, fellow Harvard scholar Charles Ogletree, said his client showed his driver’s license and Harvard ID — both with his photos — and repeatedly asked for the name and badge number of the officer, who refused. He followed the officer onto the front porch as he left his house and was arrested there.

Gates told The Root that the police handcuffed him behind his back but moved the cuffs to the front when he told them he walked with a cane. He noted that at least one of the officers in the group outside his house was black.

He spoke of a “terrifying and humiliating” experience at the Cambridge jail, where he was booked, fingerprinted, photographed and questioned, then locked up in a tiny cell that made him claustrophobic.

He said that he doesn’t know the woman who called police, Lucia Whalen, and that “she was probably doing the right thing.” Whalen didn’t respond to Associated Press requests for comment.

Gates said he harbors more anger toward the officer who arrested “the first black man” he saw and arrested him on a “trumped-up charge.”

So, let’s see if this all makes perfect sense up to this point …

A concerned neighbor saw two men, unknown to her, trying to break into a home. Assuming she would have reacted the same way had the two men been aqua, she called the police to investigate. They arrived to find the man – whom they had not yet identified – inside the home. The police asked the man for identification – standard operating procedure. The man, instead of handling the situation with the dignity and decorum one might expect from someone of his experience and education, chose not to take the minute or so it would have cost him to peacefully clear everything up, and decided to play his victim card, almost reflexively demanding the badge number and name of the police officer doing his job.

And just like that – because Mr. Gates decided it was – it became a racial matter.

It all sounds perfectly reasonable, doesn’t it?

(It is unclear whether the police officer would have dared to levy such an outrageous request for identification had Mr. Gates been white … or cyan … or simply not quite as black).

Again, read the report filed by Officer James Crowley of the Cambridge Police Department.

And, of course, keep in mind that Mr. Gates was not being arrested for breaking into his own home. He was being arrested for disorderly conduct. Apparently, after Mr. Gates finally took a nanosecond in between his exhibitions of “loud and tumultuous” behavior to produce his Harvard identification – and as the police were actually leaving his home satisfied that all had been explained – Gates followed the exiting cops out onto his porch, continuing his tirade about racism and racial profiling and other related blah-blah-blahs.

That’s when Gates was arrested.

And, sadly, that may be exactly what he wanted.

Harvard Scholar Disorderly“I’m outraged,” Gates said in extensive comments made to TheRoot.com, a Web site he oversees. “I can’t believe that an individual policeman on the Cambridge police force would treat any African-American male this way, and I am astonished that this happened to me; and more importantly I’m astonished that it could happen to any citizen of the United States, no matter what their race.

“There are 1 million black men in the prison system, and on Thursday I became one of them,” he said. “I would sooner have believed the sky was going to fall from the heavens than I would have believed this could happen to me. It shouldn’t have happened to me, and it shouldn’t happen to anyone.”

On his radio program on Wednesday, talk show host Dennis Prager suggested that Mr. Gates’ outrage may have been rooted in the fact that the police did not recognize him or know who he was when they asked for his identification.

From the Los Angeles Times:

The police say Gates asked if the officer knew “who he was.” That may sound arrogant, but many a black man in the same position has asked a similar question. It means: “Can you see who I am, not just what I am?” Because regardless of their achievements, wealth or status, they are vulnerable to the universal black male experience — finding themselves in handcuffs first and charges dropped later. Was Gates fed up and frustrated? Loud and assertive? Even disorderly, as police maintain? Possibly so. It’s tough being a perpetual suspect.

In his 1994 book, “Colored People: A Memoir,” Gates wrote that although being black is no disgrace, it can be inconvenient: “When I walk into a room, people still see my blackness, more than my Gates-ness, or my literary-ness.” Even when the room is in his own home.

After reading that last paragraph, Prager correctly commented that in this instance “they came there to protect his house.”

Precisely.

I’m not certain how many academics are readily recognizable to the public at large, but it is not an unreasonable thing that the Cambridge police – or, for that matter, almost anyone outside of the intellectual circles Mr. Gates travels in – would not know who he was on sight. Safe to say, he would have been just as unrecognized and received the same treatment had he behaved just as boorishly and uncooperatively, regardless of the melanin levels in his skin.

Still, it is clear that Gates was set off by far more than just not being recognized. Within moments of being confronted by Officer Crowley, Gates yanked the oft-summoned race card from the top of his deck and threw it in the officer’s face.

And even if, after reading the police report, one is still inclined to criticize – or even condemn – the police for questionable or inappropriate behavior in this case, why is it automatically assumed that any problems or misunderstandings that may have occurred are, by default, attributable to Mr. Gates’ skin color?

No, you need not check your calendars. Believe it or not, this is not 1959.

I draw from former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani when I say that the police officers of this country have earned the right to be given the benefit of the doubt.

It’s a shame that the President of the United States did not see it that way at last evening’s press conference. Rather, he chose to offer a spontaneous, compulsory condemnation of the Cambridge Police Department in front of a national audience without the benefit of knowing – or even being familiar with – the facts.

Isn’t it possible – at all possible – that Professor Gates might have been in the wrong?

Perhaps a better question is: Is there anyone who can still doubt Obama’s unworldly ability to unify the American people?

Well done, Mr. President.

Respectfully, maybe you should keep your damned teleprompter shut off until you know what the hell you’re talking about.

Posted in American culture, Liberalism, Obama Bonehead, politics, Racism, social issues | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

QUICK GLOBAL WARMING HIT

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 22, 2009

Just a tasty little tidbit to add to the overwhelming, debate-ending “global warming” consensus stew … 

For those of you who know the name Rutherford B. Hayes, you are probably aware that he served as President of the United States in the late 1870s. It was four-and-a-half months into his term – exactly 132 years ago yesterday – that temperatures in the great city of Nashville, Tennessee dipped to 60 degrees.

In July!

It was record that stood … until yesterday.

From WHNT, 19 in Huntsville:

NWS forecaster Bobby Boyd noted it was the third consecutive morning when Nashville either tied or broke a daily low temperature record.

Temperatures were cool, but did not break records at several Tennessee cities.

Knoxville dropped to 59 degrees Tuesday morning, Chattanooga had 60 degrees, Tri-Cities recorded 58 degrees and Memphis was 69 degrees.

Non sequitor that it is, there’s still something devilishly satisfying in knowing that even the home state of Al Gore isn’t cooperating.

Posted in Global Warming, Junk Science | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

A BIT TOO FAR, COLONEL

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 21, 2009

Ralph Peters

Ralph Peters

Private 1st Class Bowe Bergdahl went missing on June 30th in the Paktika province of Afghanistan. Since then, a video of the captured American soldier pleading for his life and calling for American troops to withdraw from the region has been posted on a Taliban website. The paratrooper, surrounded by his captors, also expressed a desire to learn more about Islam and commented on the low morale of the American soldiers there.

Officials from the US military called the video pure propaganda and vowed to find him.

Over the weekend, on the Fox News Channel, anchor Julie Banderas was interviewing military analyst Lt. Colonel Ralph Peters (retired). He is a regular contributor to the network, a frequent guest on radio talk shows (including the Michael Medved Show) and a columnist to boot.

I have consistently found Peters to be informative, well-spoken and an insightful thinker on matters related to the war against Islamo-fascism.

However, while speaking to Banderas about the Bergdahl matter, he raised more than his share of eyebrows by suggesting that if it should come out that Private Bergdahl walked away from his post while at war, the Taliban should be permitted to execute him.

From Fox News, the exchange went like this:

Julie Banderas

Julie Banderas

Banderas: Apparently Bergdahl was captured while he walked away from his US base camp. Many people are e-mailing me and asking, “How can a soldier walk off from a base on his own? Wouldn’t there always be another soldier with him? Would he be partnered with another person?” What can you tell us about that?

Peters: I want to stress first of all that we must wait until all the facts are in to make a final judgment. But nobody in the military that I’ve heard is defending this guy. He is an apparent deserter. Reports are, indeed, that he abandoned his buddies, abandoned his post and walked off. We’ll see what the ultimate truth of it is. But if he did – if he’s a deserter in wartime – as one of my old platoon sergeants used to say, “He is in beaucoup deep kimchi.”

Now, there’s another problem, Julie. On that video, he is collaborating with the enemy. Under duress or not – that’s really not relevant – he’s making accusations about the behavior of the military in Afghanistan that are unfounded, saying there are no rules. He’s lying about how he was captured, saying he lagged behind a patrol. Julie, I’ll tell you, any 11-Bravo infantryman will tell you that’s not how it works. In a war zone, any soldier is aware of where all his buddies are. If it’s a night patrol, you’re sure aware of where the guy in front of you, behind you is. So, we know this private is a liar. We’re not sure if he’s a deserter. But the media needs to hit the pause button and portray this guy as a hero.

Banderas: Wow. Obviously, I don’t want to speculate here.

She went on to say how the Fox News Channel will not air the video, lest that network appease the Taliban.

Peters: The best bet getting him back is tipsters, surveillance, special operations. For right now, I think he’s okay. They’re not going to kill him right away, if at all, because he has tremendous propaganda value. He’s making anti-American statements. He wants to investigate Islam, blah, blah, blah … Now look, Julie. I want to be clear. If, when the facts are in, we find out that through some convoluted chain of events, he really was captured by the Taliban, I’m with him. But, if he walked away from his post and his buddies in wartime… I don’t care how hard it sounds, as far as I’m concerned, the Taliban can save us a lot of legal hassles and legal bills.

Banderas (somewhat stunned): All right Lt. Colonel Ralph Peters, thank you very very much … Regardless of what the situation is, we don’t want to see any US soldier in harm’s way and we hope this guy gets out of there safely. He’s an American. He’s one of ours.

Peters: Julie, think about his buddies. Think about his buddies.

Banderas (still perplexed): Yeah .. and, of course, everyone who is over there …

Despite the tedious caterwauling and hollers coming from some left-wing bloggers over his appearance on Fox – calling him a right-wing “psycho” (among other clever leftocrat lingo) – Peters is not a gun-happy war-loving crackpot, nor is he a particularly controversial pundit. He has shown himself to be, through his writing and TV appearances, quite reasonable and articulate.

He is unquestionably a patriot.

However, for a member of the United States military – retired or not – to call for or advocate the killing of an American soldier by the enemy, even if that soldier did abandon his wartime post, is nothing short of outrageous. At the very least, it is undignified and unbecoming – particularly coming from a man with Peters’ resume. It also goes against the very standards that the heroes who defend this nation fight for.

If Private Bergdahl did abandon his fellow soldiers and country, he must be allowed to face a court-martial. He must be permitted to stand up against his accusers and defend himself. Such a detestable and cowardice act (should it be proven) must be afforded the scrutiny and judgment it rightly deserves. And if it should come out that the worst-case scenario is, indeed, a reality – that he actually defected to the enemy – then he should be tried for treason by the nation he betrayed and given the appropriate punishment.

I have no argument with Peters’ contempt at the prospect of an American soldier running away from his brethren-in-arms in a time of war.

But it can never be acceptable for an officer of the United States military to openly call for an enemy of his own country to administer any justice on an American soldier.

Posted in military, Uncategorized, War on Terror | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

IT WAS FORTY YEARS AGO TODAY

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 20, 2009

apollo 11 astronauts

Indeed, there are times when doing something because it can be done is the right thing. Sometimes, it’s quite alright to take a page from the “We’re Doing It Because We Can” file and be proud about it.

Forty years ago today, the all time story of the drama that has been the history of humanity took place – and it didn’t even happen on this planet.

The Eagle landed.

Men Walk On Moon

 

I rarely ever agree with anything President Obama says, but in calling astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins heroes, he actually got it right.

Posted in History | Leave a Comment »

SHE’S ALSO SORRY, BY THE WAY

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 20, 2009

hillary clinton

I’m not sure exactly if it is a prerequisite for all members of Obama’s Transformation Team, nor can I say for sure whether or not special “groveling” seminars were attended by Obamacrats looking to score points, but this getting beyong ridiculous. I, for one, am getting more than a little tired of having to hear high-ranking members of the United States government either apologize, express regret, or otherwise place “blame” on this country for “mistakes” made in the past – and on foreign soil, yet!

It is already well-known the President himself has mastered the art of diplomatic anguish, but now Americans are getting the opportunity to see other Obamacrats in action.

It’s Hillary’s turn.

Being an imperialist, war-hungry state hell-bent on imposing values on other nations is one thing. But contributing to the ruination of the planet due to the crippling effects of man-made Global Warming is another entirely.

Robert Burns of the Associated Press writes:

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton opened a three-day visit to India on Saturday by urging India not to repeat American mistakes in contributing to global pollution, and she passionately defended U.S. demands for help in fighting terrorism.

“We acknowledge now with President Obama that we have made mistakes in the United States, and we along with other developed countries have contributed most significantly to the problem that we face with climate change,” she said. “We are hoping a great country like India will not make the same mistakes.”

She was referring to Obama’s statement in Italy earlier this month that the U.S. had “sometimes fallen short” of its responsibilities in controlling its carbon emissions.

Sources have confirmed that that the solar-powered, enviro-friendly wind barge she was to take to India last week was still undergoing repairs.

Posted in Global Warming, Junk Science | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

SOMETIMES, REALITY BITES

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 16, 2009

franken

Sometimes, the reality of a situation catches you by surprise, even though it really isn’t a surprise. Think of an instance where the particulars of a given circumstance were familiar to you, but the reality of that circumstance didn’t really “hit home” until you experienced it for yourself.

“I’d always heard that restaurant was a dump, but it’s worse than I could have imagined.”

“I knew these subway tunnels in August were going to be hot, but it’s hotter than hell down here!”

That sort of thing.

Such an instance occured yesterday afternoon while I was working in my studio.

It was during a “top of the hour” newscast that came over the radio – I think it was Fox News.

I was quite literally minding my own business, going about my routine, paying attention to the radio peripherally, when a story about the continuing confirmation hearings for Supreme Court Justice nominee Sonia Sotomayor on Capitol Hill came through.

I heard the reporter focus on a couple of the questions posed to Sotomayor by one of the senators.

Nothing particularly earth shattering there.

However, what caused me to suddenly stop in my tracks and take pause was something truly disturbing – something as disqieting and sobering as anything I’ve heard in quite some time.

I heard the following five words:

Senator Al Franken from Minnesota.

It was stunning.

My reaction was unexpected.

I froze.

Senator Al Franken from Minnesota.

At that moment, the reality of Franken’s stolen victory over Norm Coleman in Minnesota finally blindsided me.

It became real.

This wasn’t just a name that had been swinging in the breeze of an eight month news cycle anymore. He really was a genuine United States Senator.

I must’ve stood immobile for a few seconds as that dastardly combination of five words bounced around my brain with all the subtlty of a thousand stainless steel ball bearings clanging against a metal garbage can.

Senator Al Franken from Minnesota.

I kept saying it over and over, thinking it might become more palatable with each utterance.

My face must’ve had that anxious look one gets when they’ve stubbed their toe but the pain has not yet kicked in.

I attempted to ingest the phrase – slosh it around my mouth, as it were. It took a few seconds for the horrifying reality of those five words to sink in and resonate.

Senator Al Franken from Minnesota.

Terrifying.

Paralyzing.

It was as ghastly a reality check as the time I realized that I was not going to be a legendary guitar hero many years ago. It was as painful as discovering that I really was not as clever as Rush Limbaugh.

Senator Al Franken from Minnesota.

Time stood still.

For a few moments, I felt like there was nothing to believe in – that the cruelties of this life were far more pernicious than I was prepared to deal with.

Indeed, it shouldn’t have been such a shock to hear those words. After all, that Franken is the junior Senator from Minnesota is old news. I even attempted to chalk it up to the greatness of the United States of America, that an entertainer could rise to the calling of public service – but that lasted about six seconds before I was overwhelmed with nausea.

It was a strange moment, to be sure.

Within a minute or two, I was back to my old self, looking to trade a few carbon credits with some buddies for this coming weekend, conflicted over which half of me was wiser – the “white” half or the “hispanic” half.

Posted in humor, Personal, Silly Stuff | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

IT IS NOT A RIGHT

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 15, 2009

obama healthcare

I’d like to think that there must be – has to be – among clear thinking Americans, a festering anger waiting to explode into full-blown take-to-the streets outrage. In the hearts and minds of Americans who value the free-market system – the very one that has built this nation into the most successful the world has ever known – there must be a bubbling animus on the brink of detonating.

As the nation continues to be reinvented thanks to its 21st Century Marxist makeover, I simply cannot believe how much my country has been transformed in six short months. And save for a few notable moments over the course of that span (like the hundreds of April 15th Tea Parties held across the nation), there have been agonizingly few public displays of fed-up Americans making themselves heard … and a whole host of reasons why they should be.

With the promised Obama transformation of a country founded on limited government and individualism in full-swing, the tenets of self-reliance and liberty are being pushed aside in favor of a more powerful, intrusive state. It is simply inconceivable to me that reasonable Americans, with any sense of the liberty they are privileged to possess, or with any real understanding of how that liberty exists inversely to the amount of government involvement in our everyday lives, could ever consider the nationalization of health care a legitimate path to follow.

But here we are the day after House Dems disclosed a 1,000 page plan for a mammoth expansion of government-backed health care insurance, dangling a $1.5 trillion price tag, slated to boost taxes on the “wealthiest households” over the next ten years, and all I can think is, “This is America?”

Indeed, I know there are tens of millions like me who cannot begin to believe that the health care system that is the envy of the world – the system that provides the medicines that save countless lives and the doctors that provide the highest quality care on earth – could ever (or should ever) be reconstructed to replicate the inefficient European models that Obamacrats are so enamored with. What is it that is so damn appealing about the rationing of what will evolve into sub par, assembly-line health care?

Indeed, it is an inevitability once the government sets the rules.

A small percentage of Americans who wish to have health insurance do not; that should be enough to have the best and brightest minds figuring out how to improve the system, not overhaul it. As usual, liberals don’t seek to elevate those at the bottom to better their circumstances; they wish to punish those at the top for having more.

At the risk of drawing the barrage of poison arrows I will surely take (and I am more-than-prepared to be branded a heartless, soulless, miserable excuse for a human being) the “health care” situation in this country simply isn’t the dire, cataclysmic national predicament it is made out to be.

Sorry.

The belief that the American health care system is in bad enough shape to warrant a complete change in the way it works from top to bottom is categorically untrue. No evidence exists, and no reason can justify (other than the need to appease liberal emotion) such a catostrophic change.

Is it imperfect? Can it be improved?

Undoubtedly.

To say otherwise would be a lie.

Still, the American health care system – flawed as it is (like any other system developed by human beings) – is simply the best on earth. And if one factors automobile-related deaths and murders out of the equation, Americans have the longest life expectancy of any nation on the planet. It is free enterprise and competition that enable life-saving innovations to take place.

And despite the media spin, the socialization of American health care is not just about taxing the “wealthiest” among us to pay for the distressed few who are without health insurance – because that, too, is a misnomer (which I will explain in a moment).

It is really about the bewildering Democrat notion that health care insurance is as fundamental an American right as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The orifice from which this preposterous concept was drawn from must be as deep as it is wide, because no matter how many hysterical whine-time leftists claim it is so, health care insurance is not a right, nor is it something to be provided by government to the public at large, like police or fire protection.

What next?

The right to have one’s electricity paid? The right to have one’s rent taken care of? The right to a job? The right to have the expensive name-brand chocolate pudding over the generic store-name brand?

And, of course, as with all Obamacratic initiatives, there is no time to waste on frivolous debate and political grandstanding. Those who would oppose health care coverage for someone like a single mom with six kids from the inner city are heartless, cold-blooded, politically-motivated right-wing zealots anyway. These transformations, so we are told, are necessary measures that require implementation as soon as humanly possible, lest millions of people start dropping like anvils in the streets of America.

In reality, Dems are looking to rush this through before Americans get wind of what’s really in there.

From Erica Werner of the Associated Press:

Under the House Democrats’ plan, the federal government would be responsible for ensuring that every person, regardless of income or the state of their health, has access to an affordable insurance plan. Individuals and employers would have new obligations to get coverage, or face hefty penalties.

The legislation calls for a 5.4 percent tax increase on individuals making more than $1 million a year, with a gradual tax beginning at $280,000 for individuals. Employers who don’t provide coverage would be hit with a penalty equal to 8 percent of workers’ wages, with an exemption for small businesses. Individuals who decline an offer of affordable coverage would pay 2.5 percent of their incomes as a penalty, up to the average cost of a health insurance plan.

The liberal-leaning plan lacked figures on total costs, but a House Democratic aide said the total bill would add up to about $1.5 trillion over 10 years. The aide spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the private calculations.

Three House committees will begin voting on the bill Thursday. Changes in the legislation are likely to satisfy a group of moderate and conservative Democrats who are withholding support.

The 1,000-page bill is unlikely to attract any Republican backing, and business groups and the insurance industry immediately assailed it as a job-killer.

The business groups also warned that the U.S. health care system could be damaged by adding a government-run insurance plan and a federal council that would make some decisions on benefits, as called for in the legislation. Thirty-one organizations signed the letter, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable representing top corporate CEOs and the National Retail Federation.

And of course, the idea that “taxing the wealthy” (at the heart of a liberal’s conception of “fairness”) will somehow make this fairy-tale, one-and-a-half-trillion-dollar government phony band-aid an effective elixir to help curb the ills of the current American health care system is as disingenuous as anything that has ever escaped the lips of any Obamacrat anywhere.

This fantasy-land leftist snow job is predicated on the theory that employers, medical providers and “the rich” will be footing the bill, keeping it all “affordable” to regular, everyday Americans.

But medical providers will almost assuredly raise their rates. Employers will then be forced to cut salaries, or even jobs. The “wealthy,” who create and own the businesses that employ people, will scale back operations as their costs grow.

And in the end, who will wind up paying?

The very people Obamacrats are trying to “help” with their socialization of the American health care system – the everyday taxpayer.

Thus, costs go up while quality of care goes down.

Plus, if “everyone” is to be covered, limitations are inevitable – from time and resources, to medications and providers. The bureaucracy that would be guaranteed to follow would be almost incomprehensible.

Rationing is guaranteed.

In short, $1.5 trillion doesn’t just grow on the trees of the wealthy. This potentially economy-crushing disaster cannot be paid for by just taxing the so-called “rich.”

And if there is anyone who really believes that the cost of such a destructive plan will cost only $1.5 trillion, I’d like to offer you a tunnel to go along with that bridge the Dems are peddling.

The bottom line is, this is not about health care reform, or even fixing the economy.

This is only about having more people dependant on government.

Nothing else.

Posted in Big Government, Economy, health care, Liberalism, politics | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

DEATH IN THE WHITE HOUSE

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 14, 2009

president teleprompterNo one was injured.

Thank God.

It was truly the end of an era.

It is not clear at this time whether or not any of the news networks are planning to air any tributes, or whether or not we can expect endless hours of speculative round-table discussion as to why it happened, but don’t be surprised if a media blitz ensues. The ramifications may be somewhat murky at this early stage, but rest assured, the very best people are on it.

The soundest advice is to disregard rumor and innuendo and wait for the facts to come out.

Still, there are two questions that need to be answered before anything else.

Why did President Obama’s teleprompter fall?

And who would have stood to benefit the most?

ABC’s Sunlen Miller and Jake Tapper write:

Midway through his speech on urban and metropolitan policy in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building this afternoon, one of his two small glass prompters came crashing down, hitting the wood floor and crashing in many pieces. It made quite a ruckus.

“Oh, goodness,” a startled President Obama said. “Sorry about that, guys.”

He then proceeded on with his remarks, “To pull our economy back from the brink, including the largest and most sweeping economic recovery plan in our nation’s history…”

For the rest of the speech the president relied on the one remaining teleprompter, to his right, and notes on his podium to finish his speech.

Shards of glass remained near the president’s feet for the duration of his speech.

It has been confirmed through reliable White House sources that the President, in anticipation of such a tragic eventuality, committed his “Oh, goodness” response to memory, knowing that the chances of getting an emergency backup teleprompter with an appropriate reaction into the room quickly enough would be a near impossibility.

Most agree, he did well after the teleprompter’s death.

However, the “sorry about that, guys” tag was, by all accounts, a hastily constructed ad-lib.

Reaction was mixed to the impromptu line.

Congressional hearings are expected to begin after the summer recess, and a comprehensive bi-partisan report will made available to the public before Christmas, 2011.

The Vice-Prompter will step in immediately to cover the President’s left flank when speaking in public is required.

Posted in Obama Bonehead | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

UNPRECEDENTED … OR NOT

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 13, 2009

obama messiah

The need on the part of the mainstream media to turn everything President Obama does into an unprecedented, unrivaled event for the ages continues. Blathering, saliva-gushing purveyors of specious objectivity position their crowing skulls center-screen on the alphabet channels and laud everything the Messiah-In-Chief does with such orgasmic delight, one almost gets to feeling dirty watching them. From his entrancingly delivered speeches of prodigious frivolousness to his mastering the art of answering a pre-scripted question, President Obama may be the greatest human being who has ever drawn a breath.

And seriously, can anyone own a teleprompter like he can?

Let’s face it, for the liberal media (redundancy noted), covering the presidency is fun again!

Whether based on the insatiable desire to be part of something historical, or the need to wash the sour taste of George W. Bush from their palettes, their universes begin and end with the Big Bam.

The President is particularly extolled when he goes overseas, which he has done three-hundred fifteen times already since his coronation nearly six months ago. Each new apology for the actions of the United States brings collective sighs from newsrooms across the map. Each handshake with a despotic leader makes the alphabet sycophants melt like bobby-soxers at the foot of a crooner. Safe to say, if Obama kicked a puppy across the White House lawn, stories would abound on how the pooch had it coming to him.

And so it was late last week that CNN anchor Don Lemon found himself gravely disappointed when he learned that the enthusiastic crowds that greeted President Obama in Africa were not unprecedented. In fact, President George W. Bush – war criminal, hick, mispronouncer of the word “nuclear,” hater of all that is decent – received similarly fervent welcomes when he visited there.

Lemon (to correspondent): I was watching you yesterday on the Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer when President Obama was arriving, and they were doing the dancing, and all the people who were running up to him … I know when presidents come over there, they are usually warmly received, but for a Western leader, have you ever seen anything like this? Is this unprecedented?

Correspondent Nkepile Mabuse: It’s not unprecedented. When President Bush was here, you will remember, in February, there were people who were drumming, there were dances, and President Bush joined some of them. So, it’s not unprecedented. This is truly an African welcome that is given to anybody, whether they are from Africa, or anywhere else in the world.

Lemon (clearly dejected): So, they’d welcome everyone. It doesn’t matter. This is part of how the people do it, right?

Mabuse: Indeed, Don

Not only did poor Mr. Lemon not get the answer he wanted, but the report came to a screeching halt at that point.

A shame, really.

It might have been interesting, i,e, a “no-brainer,” for Mr. Lemon (or perhaps some enterprising young producer at CNN) to actually go back through the CNN video libraries and pull some b-roll of someone like President Bush visiting Ghana – or, for that matter, any visiting “Western” head of state. (That is, if they were genuinely interested in what they were reporting). You can bet your bottom buck that a story such as this would never have made it past the CNN editirial board had the President been a Republican. And if by some chance it had, a cleverly-edited video montage of everyone who had ever step foot in Ghana would have hit the air to prove that the enthusiasm showed for a visiting American (Republican) President would have been given to anyone.

It seems to me a golden opportunity was missed here.

It might have proven to be a wonderful showcase for multiculturalism, presenting how the people of Ghana greet visiting dignitaries in general, pulling video footage of all the Presidents and world leaders they can find who have visited that county. What a fascinating expose it might have made, featuring the people of Ghana and some of their unique customs.

This could have – and maybe should have – been a wonderful human interest story.

But of course, Obama’s arrival in Africa (and the ensuing ardor) wasn’t what Mr. Lemon – or anyone else at CNN – really cared about. The filler report was simply designed to highlight yet another group of world citizens fawning over the Messiah.

When it became clear Obama’s African welcome was nothing unusual or unseen before, the story no longer served its purpose. It was time to move on.

I can’t help but wonder if the outrageous Nkepile Mabuse, who dared to group Bam with the likes of President Bush (and anybody), will ever be seen on CNN again.

Posted in Media Bias, Obama-Mania | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

AN UPDATE – WHERE ARE YOU?

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 12, 2009

I sincerely apologize for not keeping up with the blog in recent days. I have been incredibly busy with the trials and tribulations of sweet life and literally have not afforded myself the opportunity to sit and down and write. It bugs me to no end when I (as an avid reader of blogs) visit one that I particularly like and notice that the last entry is several days old. Believe me, that’s not an indictment on people who actually have busy and productive lives and simply can’t update their blogs as often as I (as an avid reader of blogs) would like just because I enjoy reading them. Still, for those who expect something from me at least once a day, I apologize. Indeed, I am disappointed that I have not been able to keep up with things as I would have liked.

No, I am not turning into one of those twice a month bloggers. No, I have not gotten too big for my cyber-britches. No, I have not become an Obamacrat. No, I will not switch to Sweet ‘N Low. And no, I will never say (even with the threat of being smacked in the face with one of Michelle Obama’s $6000 handbags) that Godfather Part III or North and South Book III are any good.

I assure you, the blog goes on as always.

More to come later today.

Posted in Roman Around | Leave a Comment »

MOUNT DOPEMORE

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 9, 2009

global warming on mount rushmore

There is not a scintilla of courage to be found in taking the position that the planet is in grave danger due to the effects of man-made global warming. There is nothing honorable or gallant in taking the public stance that humankind is placing the planet in peril due to the destructive effects of climate change. It takes no heroism to run blindly with the cackling mob on this overplayed, over-hyped, hysterically concocted hoax of a matter, especially when the hypothesis is wholly unproven and the so-called science behind it is little more than the proliferation of a wacko political agenda – just the latest disaster waiting to wipe out humanity (and the planet).

Yet, according to Greenpeace USA Deputy Campaigns Director Carroll Muffett, it’s precisely “courage” that will be needed if President Barack Obama is actually going to get off his waffle and lead the fight to nip global warming right on it’s globe-destroying ass.

My only real question is … If the continued trend of decreasing global temperatures is not to be considered the most relevant indication that man-made global warming is not happening, then what is?

What precisely is the perfect temperature for 9 July 2009 at 8:00PM in the evening in New York City? What is the “right” condition for this date and time?

Maybe we should ask the Greenpeace activists in South Dakota who were arrested for hanging a large banner next to the face of Abraham Lincoln on Mount Rushmore yesterday.

The read: “America Honors Leaders, Not Politicians. Stop Global Warming.”

Isn’t that just delicious?

(Note that the words “Climate Change” were not used).

From the AFP:

Greenpeace activists were arrested Wednesday for scaling Mount Rushmore and hanging a banner next to the carved face of Abraham Lincoln urging President Barack Obama to get tough on climate change.

A video posted on the environmental group’s website showed the massive banner hanging on the South Dakota mountain face.

“Doing what it takes to solve global warming demands real political courage,” Greenpeace USA deputy campaigns director Carroll Muffett said in a statement.

“If President Obama intends to earn a place among this country’s true leaders, he needs to show that courage, and base his actions on the scientific reality rather than political convenience.”

Courage.

*cough*

The protest comes as Obama meets with other G8 leaders in Italy.

G8 leaders agreed to bear the brunt of steep global cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, saying developed countries should reduce their pollution by 80 percent by 2050, a summit declaration said.

Greenpeace said the 11 climbers “took special care not to damage the monument, using existing anchors placed by the National Park Service for periodic cleaning.”

There is simply no courage in modern liberalism.

Where is the fearlessness in today’s class of mainstream media potato-heads who overwhelmingly exist to promote the liberal agenda and do nothing to question what is only, at best, hysterical speculation?

Where is the bravery among Hollywood types who exist in a cocoon of single-minded, lock-step leftism, bellowing adamantly in friendly surroundings about the impending demise of Earth?

What kind of guts does it take to clench one’s fist and roar in favor of a stylish cause from among a crowd of stylish drones when not a single bit of scientific evidence supports the manmade global warming hoax?

(I’ll take caller six).

In other news, the month of June was the sixth coldest on Record in Boston, the coldest in Chicago in 40 years, the coldest since 1958 in New York, and the 7th coldest on record in Rapid City, South Dakota – which is about ten miles or so from Mount Rushmore.

Posted in Global Warming, Junk Science, Liberalism | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

THAT’S COOL – NUMBER EIGHT WITH A BULLET

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 6, 2009

The Untouchables and The Twilight Zone were still a year away, but Chuck Berry’s all-time classic “Johnny B. Goode” was new and burning up turntables across the map. Marilyn Monroe, Jimmy Hoffa and Elvis Presley were still alive. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) was born. And yes, the damn New York Yankees won yet another World Series.

It was also the year that brought the coolest month of June to New York City in thirty years.

It was 1958.

In fact, beginning in 1929, there hadn’t been a New York City June any cooler than the one that gripped the five boroughs that year.

So, what’s my point?

Just a quick exercise in dealing with reality.

Can you guess which year brought the second coolest June to the Big Apple since 1929? 

(insert drumroll here

If you said 2009, you are the winner. Take a hip-hip-hooray out of petty cash.

That’s right – this year has brought the second coolest June to New York City in eighty years.

As traitors and turncoats to planet Earth continue to deny that the world hangs perilously in the balance thanks to the imminent dangers of man-made global warming, temperatures last month averaged only 67.5 degrees Fahrenheit here – the eighth coolest June since four years after the Civil War ended.

But don’t allow things like cooler temperature readings blind you to the realities of a planet see-sawing precariously over the pits of ineluctable destruction.

Thank God human beings are causing temperatures across the globe to rise to near catastrophic levels. Thank goodness man-made global warming is propelling the Earth to almost irreparable levels of damage.

New York City might have been debilitated with the coming of a premature, crippling ice age otherwise.

Only human selfishness, indulgence and the thirst for profits helped to save us this time.

Freon, lead cans and Pampers for all!

Posted in Junk Science, Liberalism, Science | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

MONDAY MORNING QUICK HITS

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 6, 2009

Jacko and Big AlA good Monday morning to you.

As I prepare for what promises to be a tremendously trying day work-wise – slowly sipping my iced coffee, wondering if a few left-over grilled hot dogs is really the smart choice for breakfast – a couple of quick thoughts come to mind.

If there are two words I do not want to hear used in the same sentence for an indefinite period of time, effective immediately, they are “Jackson” and “Michael” – in any order.

I have no degree in journalism and I am not employed by any major news outlet, but I’d like to offer this tantalizing little news nugget (and please feel free to use it at your own discretion) – Michael Jackson is still dead. Chances are excellent that his status will remain unchanged for the foreseeable future. Reports of his death have not been exaggerated, and readers of this blog can expect no further updates on his condition unless something remarkable happens.

I sincerely pray for his soul and wish for his loved ones to find comfort in what is obviously a most difficult time, but once again, this just in … Michael Jackson remains dead.

(Although I hear that the CNN Special Report – “Michael Jackson – The Beverages He Loved and the Soap He Used” was pretty good).

Second, why is it that Reverend Al Sharpton matters? How on earth does such a race-baiting, irrelevant, lying sack of arrant swill – the self-proclaimed arbiter of all that is just and equitable – still get any sort of face time on any news channel? How is it that what he thinks about anything is newsworthy?

I am a steadfast supporter and defender of the First Amendment, so I don’t wish him to be silenced in any way.

My only wish (this morning) is that Mr. Sharpton could hear himself the way most everyone else hears him.

That’s quite a wish, I know.

That, and world peace.

I don’t ask for much.

Posted in American culture, humor, Pop Culture | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

I LOVE THIS QUOTE

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 6, 2009

dennis on KRLA

One of my favorite blogs is Proof Positive. Each day readers are presented with a compelling “Quote Du Jour” (among other things).

It really is well done.

I make it my business to visit daily.

I like that kind of consistency.

Here at Roman Around, I do not offer a “Quote Of The Day” – although I’ve entertained the possibility about a dozen times. Unfortunately, I have a difficult enough time keeping up with my own “Picture Of The Day” posts, let alone finding time to come up with a daily quote. The last thing I need is another cyber obligation I won’t be able to live up to.

However, every once in a while, a particularly tasty line or two from somewhere will slap me across the chops with enough impetus that I feel compelled to share it.

This is one of those times.

On Thursday’s edition of Dennis Prager’s radio program, while he was commenting on the non-coup in Honduras – something I wrote about earlier this week – he talked about the uselessness of “world opinion.”

He couldn’t be more spot on if he had to be.

(My feeling has always been that whatever “world opinion” is on any given matter, go with the opposite).

With nearly universal condemnation coming from all corners of the globe on what was the perfectly legal removal of Manuel Zelaya in Honduras – a budding and hopeful dictator  – Prager said, If world opinion were on my side, I would start to rethink all of my positions.”

I love it.

Touche, Dennis.

Posted in Talk-Radio | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

LIFE, LIBERTY AND THE PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 4, 2009

the_declaration_of_independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AMERICA!

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 4, 2009

happy-birthday-america

happy birthday america 4

happy birthday america

happy birthday america 5

happy birthday america 3

happy birthday america 6

 

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IT WAS 233 YEARS AGO TODAY

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 4, 2009

The birth of our nation

Independence Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - July 4, 1776

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SOME TOES CANNOT BE STEPPED ON – ASK CHIP AND HELEN

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 3, 2009

Chip Reid and Helen Thomas

Chip Reid and Helen Thomas

No, I don’t think the love affair is over.

But perhaps the seemingly never-ending honeymoon is finally winding down.

While life itself is not (and cannot be) a pre-packaged, perfectly choreographed, script-dependant entity all done up in a pretty little bow, the current President – forever concerned with his own image, legacy and popularity – continues to take his cues from the Automaton Songbook. He conducts his business like a man who not only cannot think out of the box, but one who needs to have someone feeding him lines from it.

The Cue Card Chief Executive – the brilliant orator and thinker (as we’ve been told) whose only non-scripted efforts in recent times have been the killing of a fly on television (for which he was berated by PETA), laughing at tasteless jokes about Rush Limbaugh dying, and his procession of “uhs” and “ums” in those rare and unscripted moments when the cue card man was away – simply hasn’t the capacity to participate in a any formal public event without having every word scripted, every move blocked, every question pre-selected, every space around him filled with teleprompters, every “evil eye” glare strategically timed and every townhall meeting participant pre-screened.

From embarrassingly reading the wrong script off a dissenting teleprompter at a White House function – and not having the presence of mind to realize he was doing so – to needing his army of electronic idiot sheets all around him at even the briefest public venue (where only a quick word or two is necessary), the man who has been touted to be as quick as Kennedy, as great a communicator as Reagan, and as visionary as King is, in reality, as smooth as a sanding pad and as clueless as his own Vice President. (Unduly harsh?) His ability to think on his feet, collect his thoughts and summon the right words, as has been shown time and time again, is decidedly limited – perhaps nonexistent. “On the spot” thinking is not the President’s strong suit.

However, for all of his shortcomings, I will be fair.

There are things he knows – and quite well.

Big government is his forte. Driving a stake through the heart of liberty in the name of equality and justice is an Obama specialty. Drawing from his Marxist sensibilities, propaganda and manipulation is what he knows. It’s what he’s been taught. A protégé of the Saul Alinsky school of thought, Obama knows that his radical notions of government-controlled health-care, his unprecedented spending and government intervention in American lives must be carefully sold and crafted to sound reasonable. Every syllable must be uttered in perfect cadence. Every word must count.

The only way that is possible is to be able to control, restrain and limit the free press.

And so it was, on Wednesday, that the most magnificent press secretary ever to take the podium at the White House, Robert Gibbs, was surprisingly confronted by two of his own from the press corps. This was not a polite, pre-scripted, paddy-cake exchange between a blind main-stream-media Obamacrat and the Messiah’s spokesman. This was no staged conflict.

This was classic.

Michael Blatt from News Busters writes:

Is the press corps starting to tire of the Obama Administration?

At a press conference today (Wednesday), Helen Thomas and CBS’s Chip Reid got into it with Robert Gibbs over how the administration has been prepackaging media events.

First Reid asked why the questions for Wednesday’s town hall on healthcare were being preselected. After Gibbs tried to dodge that question a few times, Thomas became involved, saying, “We have never had that in the White House. I’m amazed that you people … call for openness and transparency.”

Thomas said that the administration was trying to control the media, and she pointed out how they coordinated questions with the Huffington Post at a press conference.

Indeed, I diligently checked the news wires, combed through endless weather reports and even managed to listen to the “top of the hour” news reports on the radio, and I could not find any reports of dramatic temperature drops in hell.

Blatt continues:

Thomas is not the first journalist to question the White House’s coordination with the Huffington Post. The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank also took the White House to task for the coordination.

Wednesday’s press conference was also not the only media event that was in some way coordinated. Previous town halls have featured Obama campaign supporters and Democratic politicians lobbing softballs at Obama.

As Thomas noted, “[Obama’s] formal engagements are prepackaged.”

After Gibbs continued to dodge questions, Thomas said, “Of course you would, because you don’t have any answers.”

Before the exchange ended, Reid asked Gibbs to pass along this question to Obama: “Is he going to support a tax increase on the middle class?”

Afterwards, Thomas told CNS News that Obama’s grip on the media is even greater than that of Richard Nixon.

“Nixon didn’t try to do that. They couldn’t control [the media]. They didn’t try that. What the hell do they think we are, puppets? They’re supposed to stay out of our business. They are our public servants. We pay them. … I’m not saying there has never been managed news before, but this is carried to fare-thee-well–for the town halls, for the press conferences. It’s blatant. They don’t give a damn if you know it or not. They ought to be hanging their heads in shame.”

How about that?

My fingertips may actually detach themselves from the rest of my hand in revolt for typing this – and I may have to rub my eyes more than a couple dozen times to make sure that I have actually posted these words on my blog – but “Good for you, Helen Thomas!”

(Checking to make sure the world is still here).

As Eric at the great Vocal Minority website writes:

Why would two notoriously liberal establishment journalists suddenly turn on an administration they’ve heretofore been cheerleading for? My guess is it’s an ego/pride thing. The rigging of the Huffington Post “reporter” by the Obama team must have infuriated professionals like Thomas and Reid. And if there’s one thing you don’t want to do, it’s upset a news media type with a holier-than-thou complex.

Indeed, it goes without saying that the vast majority of the mainstream media has been in bed with President Obama since the moment he stepped forward from his blockbusting two years in the US Senate to become The One. He has done no wrong in their eyes – and it is reflected in the pages of their magazines and newspapers and in their broadcats. While never missing the opportunity to brand George W. Bush everything from a hayseed to a war criminal, the Messiah’s transforming blitzkrieg on American individualism, free market principals and liberty has brought very little in the way of hard criticisms from the lock-step fourth estate. They have done all they can to shamelessly promote and defend his intrusive big government policies while (unsuccessfully) attempting to maintain the veneer of impartiality.

However, media types don’t like being told what to do, how to do it and where it can be done – not even drooling, orgasmic Obamacrats.

Bam had best watch his step.

Media toes do not like being trod upon, even if the feet doing the smashing can walk on water.

Posted in First Amendment, Liberalism, Media Bias, Obama Bonehead, politics | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

SMALLEY TO THE HILL – QUICK THOUGHTS

Posted by Andrew Roman on July 1, 2009

Minnesota's new Senator

Minnesota's new Senator

The saddest thing about Al Franken’s victory in Minnesota is not that the US Senate will now have a total of fifty-eight Democrats (plus two Independents who routinely cuddle up with the Dems), thus making it filibuster proof. (Republicans weren’t showing they had the stomachs for a filibuster anyway). It’s not that the State of Minnesota will have an indecorous, foulmouthed, spasmodic, bitter hothead representing it in Washington. It’s not that yet another card-carrying Leftocrat will be serving on Capitol Hill, joining the liberty-raping, free-market stifling, big government Obamacrat majority. It’s not that a contemptible, derogatory, flame-throwing, uncouth buffoon – with all the charm and appeal of a blood blister – will begin a six-year term in Congress.

No, the saddest thing about Al Franken’s victory is that a good man – a very good man – Norm Coleman, is leaving office.

Truly one of the good guys, Coleman’s departure from the Senate in favor of a choleric, boorish, loud-mouthed, expletive-happy, unfunny, washed-up comedian (and failed talk-show host) is very despairing.

And so it is, that as an honorable public servant like Coleman steps aside, a man with as much poise and dignity as an abdominal cramp will now answer the calling to public service.

That light you see in the sky is not the sun kissing the horizon, but rather the glow of proud Minnesotans who will now have the privilege of getting what they paid for.

Yes, I know that half of all of those who voted in Minnesota – less 312 – did not ask for this. They did not subscribe to a six-year frolic with Stuart Smalley.

You all have my deepest sympathies and prayers.

I know the pain you must feel.

Perhaps attending a support group – or sharing a case of tequila – may help.

The sad reality is that the Leftocrats have won again.

Yes, eight months after the United States propelled an inadequate, over-his-head, bona fide leftist community organizer into the Oval Office – and six months after the new President’s long-promised fundamental transformation of this country began – yet another hate-America-first product of the 1960s is packing his bags for Washington to “serve the people.”

Lucky us.

And so the long fight is over.

The Minnesota Supreme Court has spoken.

Mr. Coleman has conceded.

Liberals, leftists, Marxists and other children are bouncing for joy at the Franken victory. From MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the trumpets of victory are sure to sound. From CNN to the New York Times, the celebrations will surely begin. From Fisherman’s Wharf to Greenwich Village, the orgasmic triumphant bellows of Obamacrats and other lock-step drones will certainly be loud and steady. Opinion pieces declaring conservatism to be even more dead than it was after Obama’s anointment are sure to pepper editorial pages across the map.

It comes with the territory.

My head is shaking not at the court’s decision, nor at the protracted, bitterly-fought battle that lasted the better part of a year to resolve.

It is what it is.

I shake my head because through eight months of trials and tribulations – through months of back-and-forth ballot counting and verification, legal wrangling and squabbling – I am still left asking one simple question … What the hell were 1.2 million Minnesotans thinking?

That a person like Smalley could even garner such a close vote in an election with a good and decent man like Coleman is astonishing.

That he could win is frightening.

I’m simply trying to figure it all out.

(I’m also trying to figure out why I am a devoted New York Mets fan, but that’s a separate issue).

Anyway, my initial instinct is that Senator Smalley will ultimately prove to be nothing more than an irrelevant and entertaining slice of comic relief on Capitol Hill (more so than Democrats already are) and will actually help to invigorate the Republicans in the long run.

Indeed, I have heard many conservatives complain that Coleman wasn’t conservative enough – a RINO, if you will. (Republican In Name Only). He deserved to lose because of some ridiculous ethanol bill.

Yeah, okay.

Even if Coleman had a horn on his nose, it doesn’t change the fact that the new Senator from Minnesota is  Al bleeping Franken.

Saying it five or six times doesn’t make it any better either.

Posted in politics | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »