Scanning the Sphere: quick hits

Scanning the Sphere: quick hits July 15, 2008

Found in the mailbox: No One Sees God; The Dark Night of Atheists and Believers by Michael Novak.

Which reminds me, this is the best book I’ve read this year, reviewed here and here.

We’re painting another bedroom (I love it when my husband takes some vacation time) so here are some quick hits – follow the links, they’re all good:

From the Dept. of Obama’s gotta learn to lighten up!
: I can’t believe the brouhaha over the New Yorker cover! Remember when Kilborn put the “Snipers Wanted” logo on Bush’s picture even before he was elected? Everyone told Bush fans to “lighten up” and it was good advice. I laughed my head off the first time I saw the Der Spiegel cover featured in this piece by Rick Moran, and I laughed again tonight.

Obama likes the big pageants, and he “nuances” and “clarifies” and “refines” his positions more than a gymnast on a balance beam. That alone will make him ripe for satire. He’s making noises that, whether intended or not, sound like he’s thinking of forming an “Obama youth” brigade. Someone is going to satirize that. Someone is going to draw a picture of him looking goofy in a helmet or worse, cowering before his troops, or sitting in a chair like a psychologist trying to analyze Al Qaeda’s “lack of empathy”. And sometime between now and November someone, somewhere will write a skit about Obama and Co, constantly re-writing and airbrushing clean his uncached website content like a Pravda Prole. If he can’t learn to take it – and laugh stuff off – he’s never going to make it.

And the left won’t make it, either, if all they can do is look at this and whine, “but all that stuff is all truuuuuue!”

Poorly played by Obama and Company, who seem just a tad less sophisticated for their reaction, don’t they?

Protein Wisdom has the best analysis if this whole imbroglio I’ve yet seen – don’t miss it!

What the progressive handwringers should be doing is gleefully and full-throatedly noting the satire, then preparing to laugh at anyone who sees this as an accurate depiction of Obama. What they should be doing is enjoying a wry smile at their next cocktail party over the (presumed) idiocy of the rightwingers who might take this cover at face value, so shallow is their understanding of the literary arts.

But the real irony here is they can’t do that — and that’s precisely because their worldview is predicated on being able to control “meaning” by consensus. [links and emphasis PW’s – admin]


Dept of Yes, they’re still talking down the economy:
Second Quarter GDP estimates are higher than anticipated. As Glenn Reynolds notes:

If there’s a recession next year, it won’t retroactively justify bogus claims of a recession last year.

Meanwhile, the NY Sun give you 63 Signs of a Recession.

Dept. of Everything is Always Bush’s Fault:
Harry Reid says you only dislike Congress because of Bush. If it weren’t for Bush, you’d just love him and the rest of Congress, and Democrats in general! Nice of him to tell you why you feel the way you feel, isn’t it? Give Bush credit – he at least pays lip service to your intelligence. You’ll miss that when the next president calls a presser in the Rose Garden and advises you to pee thrice before flushing.

Dept of I Agree:
Investor’s Business Daily says The Pelosi should resign because she is incompetent:

Last Tuesday, Pelosi sent a letter to President Bush urging him to release a “small portion” of the nation’s 706 million barrels of strategic-reserve oil to bring down prices. Regardless of how one feels about whether reserves should be held at all, two big problems stand out with Pelosi’s tiny demand.

One, she’s proposing a misappropriation of the reserves. The U.S. oil stockpile is a 58-day cushion for emergencies that today are all possible. If Israel attacks Iran, for example, and prices double again. Or if Hugo Chavez cuts off his supplies, as he threatened to do as recently as Sunday.

The reserve is there to cushion the blow of a market disruption; it’s not an open-market mechanism to manipulate prices for political ends.

Personally, I think anyone who is content to do nothing about both the oil prices, and our reliance on foreign oils should resign. That would mean most members of congress, who seem incapable of putting partisanship second to actually serving the nation. It’s nice to think about “transitioning away” from oil, but we’re years away from that. Oil isn’t just about cars, and I worry about people heating their homes this winter. Forget about “the great transition” sometime in the future, Mrs. Pelosi – what are we going to do about this winter, and next? We should have been drilling these past 30 years!

Meanwhile: Bush says “drill” and oil drops $9.00. We can’t just say it, we have to DO it.

Dept. of Convention Floor Fight: 8 of Obama’s superdelegates are willing to step toward Hillary. Who told you this wasn’t over? Hmm? Come on, you know who! Alright, it was Hitchens! I’m still not convinced about McCain, either. You want my investment advice? Invest in popcorn.

Dept. of this Fellow is All Over the Place: Archbishops of Canturbury: they don’t make them like they used to.

Dept. of Failing Upwards: Jamie Gorelick doesn’t exactly seem like a lucky penny for her employers. Widgets

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