Saturday, April 2, 2011


Fareed Zakaria caught my attention the first time I heard him speak, he was bright, articulate and seemingly brave enough to state some pretty obvious truths about the USA that few were willing to admit.

More recently, as he's become an established presence on TV as one of the more ubiquitous of talking heads, the sharp and gutsy intellectualism I first responded to and became a fan of has slid into a more conventional and at times, dare I say it, "lame intellectualism" that makes too many concessions to the right's perspectives than I believe are legitimate.

This article displays some of both those tendencies. Some brilliant analyses and summaries of complex problems and solutions. And some not so brilliant (as soon as an essayist uses the tired metaphor of "cancer" you know they're getting lazy, and anyone dedicated to the truth should stop using the term "entitlement" since it is a rightwing framing device now and has lost its original meaning which was the belief that all of us are entitled to certain rights, like the right to vote and to get help if no jobs are available etc. but now is seen more as a spoiled "I'm entitled" presumption etc.).

But I found it worth reading because he still manages to make several valid points that need to be made consistently these days, like his point about discretionary spending being irrelevant to the debt and deficit issues. Check it out here and see what you think.


JIm said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Lally said...

The proprietor of this blog reserves the right to delete comments (as stated above to the right) that contain lies or which "curse out" others.
Also, people who understand the web better than I do have advised me that the best tactic for dealing with what on the net are called "trolls" (i.e. those who use someone's blog for spewing their often vitriolic diatribes or just nasty and negative commentary with no regard to the sensibilities of those who make the blog or support its perspective, or who simply take over any comments thread with repetitive responses that push their own agenda and fail to respond to actual posts or other comments, or are just meant to provoke and gain attention, etc.) is to simply ignore them.

Anonymous said...

the expression is "do not feed the trolls", hon. And it works.

lovely lunch the other day....

-K- said...

I'll read the article in a minute but troll or non-troll, calling Barack Obama a "boy president" is itself enough to be 86'd for life.

JIm said...

Which do you prefer:
-the Boy President
-the Ditherer in Chief
-the Socialist in Chief
-the worst president since Jimma Carter and possible since James Buchanan, if in fact his vision of America, including his bankrupting debt and deficits prevail.

PS And do not give me that crap about racism. I sent money to Lee, Fazier and West, who are all black American conservatives. I do not need lectures from liberals, who routinely berate and attempt to demean female and black conservatives.

Robert Z. said...

Screw you jimmass. i have zero respect for you. you've had numerous opportunities to be a mensch, to be decent, but every single time, you take the low road.

JIm said...

I have no need of respect from people who have little if any respect for US Constitutional government and support a president who is attempting to lead us into bankruptcy and oblivion.

JIm said...

I love that word mensch. I remember it from my years in the schmata trade. I do not believe you rise to the level of mensch. In fact you still have not given one instance of supposed conservative vulgarity on the part of Rush, Anne or Mark. I do not know the Yiddish term for jerk other than the S word. Possibly you could help me describe your behavior of screaming vulgarity and your subsequent inability to substaniate.

-K- said...

Jlm - I would have preferred you used anything but a racial slur but the fact is, you did.

And your version of "Some of my best friends are Afro-Americans" does not excuse it.

JIm said...

You look for racisim that is in your heart, not mine. I beleive that is called projection. Liberals scream racism, liar and anarchist at conservatives and Tea Party Folk, but the most unruly, unlawful, and lacking of civility are liberals. Witness union thugs invasion and threatening of legislators. Witness your groundless accusation of racism, yet refusal to defend Justice Thomas, Condeleesa Rice, Governor Palin, Michelle Bachman. K, you are a hypocrite of the highest and most flagrant self rightous kind. Preach to me when you learn basic human manners and condem those that come from your own political persuasion.

Robert G. Zuckerman said...

Jim for the nth time, you were the one who raised the issue of non-vulgarity, therefore, it is incumbent upon you to provide specific instances of this before I respond. When I do, rest assured it will be substantiated, unlike your opinion/assertion-as fact emptoids. But by all rules of engagement, since you made the assertion, you must go first in providing examples of their non-vulgarity. I suspect you are unable to do this which is why you continue to transparently mount your best defense is good offense tactic.

JIm said...

Your turn Robert.



November 19, 2004

(Washington DC)---- The Faith Based Leadership Council (FBLC)(formerly the National Faith Based Initiative Coalition), a group of over 200 black clergy and members of the Faith Based Community, denounced the racial motivated attacks upon Dr. Condoleezza Rice by Editorial Cartoonists Jeff Danziger, Pat Oliphant, Garry Trudeau, the Washington Post and New York Times.

The three cartoonists have for several months used racial stereotypes to conduct their personal character assassination of Dr. Rice’s integrity because she has made the choice to serve in the Bush Administration.

“These cartoonists believe that the liberal views of the Washington Post and New

Robert G. Zuckerman said...

"Limbaugh over time has made statements reinforcing anti-Latino bigotry to his listeners. For example, he once said this: “If we are going to start rewarding no skills and stupid people — I’m serious, let the unskilled jobs, let the kinds of jobs that take absolutely no knowledge whatsoever to do — let stupid and unskilled Mexicans do that work.” On another occasion, the bigoted Rush Limbaugh referred to Antonio Villaraigosa, the Mayor of Los Angeles, as a “shoe shine” boy.

Then too, Rush Limbaugh evidences apparently bottomless contempt for women. It is, for example, extremely saddening that in the post-caveman age, a human male would actually say, as Limbaugh has said “Feminism was established to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream.” The consequences of that attitude for American women have been, as we well know, extremely severe. The attitude is, for one example, part of the reason the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act did not get passed during a Republican administration. Limbaugh even found a way to disparage and demean females in the context of not taking American torture of Iraqis seriously. On this count he said: “They are being feminized. I think a lot of the American culture is being feminized. I think the reaction to the stupid torture is an example of the feminization of this country.”

Beyond targeting women generally, Limbaugh targets lesbians with his irrational..."

Robert G. Zuckerman said...

This is from a conservative blog:

An Open Letter to CPAC Sponsors and Organizers Regarding Ann Coulter
James Joyner · Monday, March 5, 2007 · 65 Comments
Conservatism treats humans as they are, as moral creatures possessing rational minds and capable of discerning right from wrong. There comes a time when we must speak out in the defense of the conservative movement, and make a stand for political civility. This is one of those times.

Ann Coulter used to serve the movement well. She was telegenic, intelligent, and witty. She was also fearless: saying provocative things to inspire deeper thought and cutting through the haze of competing information has its uses. But Coulter’s fearlessness has become an addiction to shock value. She draws attention to herself, rather than placing the spotlight on conservative ideas.

At the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2006, Coulter referred to Iranians as “ragheads.” She is one of the most prominent women in the conservative movement; for her to employ such reckless language reinforces the stereotype that conservatives are racists.

At CPAC 2007 Coulter decided to turn up the volume by referring to John Edwards, a former U.S. Senator and current Presidential candidate, as a “faggot.” Such offensive language—and the cavalier attitude that lies behind it—is intolerable to us. It may be tolerated on liberal websites but not at the nation’s premier conservative gathering.

The legendary conservative thinker Richard Weaver wrote a book entitled Ideas Have Consequences. Rush Limbaugh has said again and again that “words mean things.” Both phrases apply to Coulter’s awful remarks.

Coulter’s vicious word choice tells the world she care little about the feelings of a large group that often feels marginalized and despised. Her word choice forces conservatives to waste time defending themselves against charges of homophobia rather than advancing conservative ideas.

JIm said...

So raghead and faggot equals c**t? Is that the extant of the vulgarity that worked you into a lather? Wow! As I understand it Coulter is a favorate of Log Cabin Republicans, so not everyone of that persuasion takes offense. AS far as Muslim, the doctrine that most follow is that non Muslims should be converted, taxed or killed. You do not see many Jewish Temples or Christian churchs in Tehran or Mecca. That would be a tough croud, even for Anne. What specifically has Rush said that was vulgar?

Robert G. Zuckerman said...

typical of you to dismiss Ann's behaviour, the same way Henry Hyde attempted to call is cheating affair and family breakup a "youthful indescretion" in his mid forties. Typical teapocriscy. Typcial boorishness.

JIm said...

Now that Obama has:

-Not closed gitmo and is moving to military trials

-Not pulled troops out of Iraq by 2010

- Extended Bush Tax cuts

- Caved on mandates by issuing over 1000 waivers for Obamcare

Has he become as evil and thuggish as Bush Cheney??

PS That was your stupidest reponse yet. You still have not responded on Rush and Mark.

Loyeen said...

Lally, K, and Robert,

Why do you respond? I am very excited that Obama is running in 2012. I can not wait to contribute to his campaign.


Lally said...

Very good question. For myself, I often don't, and then I get complacent and take the bait, having slipped into thinking a logical argument based on facts will end the discussion. But of course, as your question implies, it's not a discussion, it's just a one note attempt to wear everyone else down, and unfortunately sometimes it works. (Bill Maher talked about that at the end of his latest show, how the right comes up with ridiculous ideas or lies or etc. but they ignore the polls and people's responses—and logic and reason and facts—and just keep pounding away at their message, until sooner or later they've once again managed to frame the public discourse in their terms, and what once was thought of as fringe extreme ideas or obvious lies are suddenly accepted by a lot of people, especially the media in their attempts to not be labeled "liberal" etc.)

Robert G. Zuckerman said...

Ha, great point Loyeen. I'm with you. I, and all the good people I know, even some ragheads and faggots, will contribute to Obama's 2012 campaign.

JIm said...

Mabe Lefties will change their bumper stickers from Bush to "Obama lied people died".

Loyeen said...


That line is about 9-10 years old. If you look at my sister's bumper sticker that she has had on her car for at least that long it says, "Bush lied people died." AND IT IS SO TRUE!!!!! Try again!!!!