September 19, 2018

Bookworm Beat 9/7/2018 — the “won’t that boring Obama ever shut up” edition

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This Bookworm Beat has as its starting points Obama’s self-aggrandizing, offensive speech. Then it gets to the fun and interesting stuff for you to enjoy.

Obama as a sleeping aid. I visited my father’s best friend today. The two met in 1935. My father passed away more than twenty years ago, but his friend is still going strong at 98.

He’s a dear man, except when he gets on politics. Then, his inner communist emerges, loud and shrill. He listened to Obama’s speech this morning but when I asked him about it as a conversational gambit, he couldn’t tell me what he had heard. Having looked at the speech myself, I’m not surprised at his failure to discuss the speech. This inability wasn’t due to advanced age. As always, aside from self-aggrandizement and insults, Obama has little to say.

So let’s move on to more interesting stuff, including more riffs about Obama’s many failures:

The Trump economy is still going strong. The economy is booming as it has few times before in American history. In his forgettable speech, Obama tried to own it.

It’s true that Obama presided over a decent stock market, but that was because investors were too afraid to do anything with their money in his hyper-regulatory environment but plant it in the stock market. They didn’t invent things, grow businesses, or hire people. To the extent people had jobs, they were dead-end, low-paying, part-time affairs. And so the economy staggered on for eight long years, without a single serious upward blip.

And then Trump got elected and, magically, the economy started roaring. It roared with even more vigor when Trump got the tax man off the back of businesses (i.e., employers) by bringing America’s corporate tax rate in line with the corporate tax rate in most of Europe. (Yup, all those semi-socialist nations so beloved of the Left had corporate tax rates lower than America’s.)

Based upon the soaring economy, I’m going to venture a prediction. I doubt that many minorities will be able to make themselves pull the lever for Republican candidates. However, I suspect that they’ll passively-aggressively do so by failing to turn out for Democrats. After all, the Democrats did not improve their living standards; at least one Republican has.

The true story behind Obama’s Iran deal made me want to cry. Wait! That’s wrong. It didn’t make me want to cry. It actually made Wendy Sherman, the chief American negotiator cry — right in front of the Iranian team. Apparently staying in a super luxury hotel for several days and eating only five star cuisine, weakened her so much that, in the face of their meanie demands, she broke down.

Matthew Continetti has the story and I urge you to read it. Then you can decide whether you want to laugh or cry. All I know is that, having read it, I thanked God once again for President Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, Trump garners praise for his Iraq policy. Obama incontinently left Iraq, giving birth to ISIS and creating an opening for Iran. According to one man at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies, while Trump cannot undo the sum of damage Obama inflicted on that beleaguered nation, he’s making really smart decisions:

[T]he real reason why the US is staying put in Iraq is to prevent it from becoming an Iranian client state, as Lebanon has become and as Syria might soon become. The investment of 2,000 troops, most of whom serve as advisors and trainers of the Federal Army of Iraq, is worth its price in gold in achieving this objective compared to the 100,000 American troops who were on the ground before the massive withdrawal in 2010.

[snip]

This underlying quest for independence from Iranian tutelage justifies President Trump’s wager that 2,000 troops might be worth maintaining to prevent the new fall of Baghdad. The least it could do is stave off the Iranians sufficiently for Iraq’s government and citizens to decide for themselves what the nature of their relationship with Iran will be.

The whole analysis makes for fascinating reading.

A deputy’s widow casts well-deserved shade on Nike. Sherry Graham-Potter’s husband was killed in the line of duty in 2005. She helped herself recover by running . . . and she wore a Nike hat while she ran. In a moving Facebook post that has since gone viral, Potter explains why she won’t be buying Nike products any more.

Beto O’Rourke follows the proud Democrat tradition of being embarrassed by the American flag. Okay, maybe it wasn’t Beto, but just his advance team. Nevertheless, I’d like to think that Texans outside of Austin and Houston might find the following unappealing:

As part of his self-proclaimed campaign promise to personally drive to all 254 counties in Texas, O’Rourke hosted a town hall meeting Saturday, Aug. 25, in Navasota, renting the hall at the VFW Post #4006.

[snip]

According to VFW Post #4006 Commander Carl Dry, the Veterans of Foreign Wars is not a political organization and the rental agreement with the O’Rourke campaign was part of the standard rental contract for any event.

“I do not normally attend rental events, but I attended Saturday to make sure things ran smoothly,” said Dry, who noted there were only two requests he could not allow at the VFW Post. “They wanted to open the doors (to the Flight Deck Lounge) and I couldn’t allow that and they wanted to take the flags down, I didn’t only say no, I said hell no, you don’t take the flags off the wall. I can’t believe any American would ask us to do that and I don’t know why he wanted them down or what he was going to put up instead.”

I’ll just leave this picture here:

READ  Bookworm Beat 8/16/2018 -- the Brennan edition and open thread

Cory Booker and the Yiddish joke. I strongly disagree with Jonah Goldberg’s NeverTrump stance, which I think is a kind of blind monomania on his part. Aside from that monomania, though, he’s still a gifted, insightful, funny writer. In his scathing post about the Democrats’ disgusting behavior during the Kavanaugh hearing, he wrote this marvelous take on Cory Booker’s miserably executed Potemkin-village version of Spartacus theater:

In Yiddish humor, which has its own absurdist bent, a schlemiel is a clumsy person who often spills his soup and a schlimazel is the sort of chronically unlucky person the soup lands on. Booker achieved a double play: He spilled the soup on himself.

The anonymous White House office drone proved there is a Deep State. However, in the New York Times essay that has D.C. a’quiver, the drone tried to dress up Deep State sedition as a “steady state,” but it still is what it is: unelected apparatachicks who believe that they, not the American people, get to choose our government and the direction it takes. Tucker Carlson has a good riff on the subject:

Remember, California is geographically a red state. As is true for most of America, geographically California is mostly a red state. It’s only the population density in the major urban areas, that’s sees it regularly vote true blue.

That may be changing, however, as Californians watch the Trump economic juggernaut and then listen to their Democrat politicians plot ways to ensure that the juggernaut never benefits anyone but Silicon Valley and Hollywood. How else to explain this news?

According to a new poll, California’s two biggest statewide races in 2018 are tightening, as the leads for front-runners Gavin Newsom and Dianne Feinstein have been cut to single digits.

The poll, conducted by Probolsky Research between Aug. 29 and Sept. 2, found that Lt. Gov. Newsom leads Republican businessman John Cox 44 percent to 39, with 17 percent of the poll’s participants saying that they are undecided.

Of course, the same poll shows that hard Left Kevin de León is gaining on Dianne Feinstein in the Senate race, but that may have more to do with (1) the fact that the open primary means there are no Republicans on the ballot (although I still think people should write in Travis Allen’s name) and (2) Feinstein’s idiotic decrepitude.

Write-ins or note, how about if we conservatives make damn sure to vote in order to mix things up a little in California’s gubernatorial politics?

There are a new breed of taxi drivers at SFO. According to the Daily Mail, San Francisco airport is beginning to smell like San Francisco streets thanks to taxi drivers peeing and pooing outside the airport. Included in the article one finds this passive voice sentence, giving an unattributed opinion about the problem’s genesis:

It is believed taxi drivers are reluctant to go to the bathroom for fear of losing their place in the highly lucrative airport taxi queue.

I don’t think so. You see, for decades . . . forever . . . or at least since there’s been an airport outside of San Francisco, taxi drivers have been worried about losing their place in line. But this disgusting problem is of fairly recent origin. What’s changed?

I think the picture included with the article suggests what’s changed:

I have no reason to believe that the above picture is of San Francisco’s taxi drivers, but it nevertheless captures the fact that the majority today’s taxi drivers come from third world countries. When you land in America, if you can drive, being a taxi driver is a good way to break into the economy. I approve of anyone who works hard at a paying job, so this is not meant to be a rant about third world men driving taxis.

Having said that, there’s no getting away from the fact that the people in third world countries, are not averse to public urination or defecation. Without at all disparaging how generally decent and hard-working this new generation of taxi driver is, I’m betting that their toilet standards are very different from ours.

In the same vein, I wouldn’t be surprised if past generations of taxi drivers with more Western roots had a culture with more mutual trust. This would mean that that drivers would help each other hold places in line so that they could run to the bathroom. One of the things that makes third world countries third world is that they don’t have trust cultures. Instead, it’s an in-your-face dog-eat-dog world from which they came. In those places, you snooze (or run to the bathroom) and you lose.

In other words, it’s not the lines, it’s the culture.

China discovers it’s not smart to mess with Mother Nature. Austin Bay points out that China’s brutally enforced one-child policy (wiping out female fetuses, forced abortions, etc.), is proving to have some side-effects that many of us predicted a long time ago, including serious demographic problems:

China now permits larger families. But the damage has been done.

China’s fertility rate in 2010 dropped to 1.5 children per woman; the zero population growth replacement rate is 2.1 children.

It’s highly probable China will face the same “geriatric” economic conditions that already threaten Japan and several Western European countries: too few workers paying the pensions of retirees as well as shouldering their medical costs. By 2030, the median age in China will rise to 43. In 1980, the median was 23. In 2011, China had 925 million workers. By 2050, China’s working-age population will fall by 225 million, about 23 percent of the projected population. Between 2040 and 2050, 25 percent of the population will be over 65 years old, retired and drawing pensions. The “squeezed” worker cohort must then support both pensioners and dependent young.

[snip]

The one-child limit created a marriage problem. In Chinese culture, an eldest son is prized. If limited to one child, families tend to abort girl babies. For Han Chinese born between 1981 and 2000, an imbalance exists between marriageable women and men. The official sex ratio in that cohort is roughly 106 males for every 100 females. That’s bad, but the numbers are hazy. Some critics claim the actual male figure is between 115 and 120.

This imbalance has spawned social and criminal problems. “Bride traffickers” smuggle Southeast Asian women into China to marry Han Chinese men. If it sounds like a type of sex trafficking, it is.

Feminists’ misogyny. Faith Moore wrote a fine article about the University of Kansas’s new “Feminist Parenting Group,” which helps sad, angry Leftist women raise sad, angry intersectionalist children. In the course of that fine article, she made a very important point:

Why is it so important for feminists to convince us that gender is socially constructed, not biologically innate? It’s an important question, given that studies have repeatedly shown that this isn’t true. And important, too, since these poor children are now being indoctrinated into an ideology that has no basis in fact, which can only lead to confusion and misery as they try to live in a way that goes against their own biology. The truth, I think, is that, of all the ideological groups out there, it’s feminists most of all who have fallen victim to the patriarchy.

Modern feminists believe that everything male is good, and everything female is bad. They believe that success looks like male success — a flourishing career, a position of power, a salary — and they see femininity — caring for children, supporting their husbands, keeping house — as weakness. If this is the lens through which you view the world — and if you believe that women are just as capable of success as men are — then you have to convince everyone that “male” traits aren’t really male, and “female” traits aren’t really female. You have to rebrand them into “successful” traits and “unsuccessful” ones.

In other words, true feminism celebrates the feminine, rather than trying to force women into either male or weirdly androgynous molds.

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And in honor of that idea….

The lesson of Steve Jobs. The new book by Lisa Brennan-Jobs, Steve Jobs’ daughter, exposes the man as a nasty bit of work. He was by turns dismissive and vicious, but always obsessed with sex — inappropriately so given that he was having conversations with a nine-year-old. Maureen Callahan, having read the book, makes an interesting point (emphasis mine):

Steve pushes Brennan-Jobs out of family photos. He treats her like hired help, except he doesn’t pay her. He tells her she’ll never get anything from him and will grow up to be nothing. She hears her half-sister Eve describe her as “Daddy’s mistake.” On vacation, Jobs introduces Lisa to his friend Larry Ellison, and squeezes her tight when Ellison brags he’s just flown one woman out of town and is flying another one in, neither any wiser.

These are the gods of Silicon Valley, exacting their revenge of the nerds.

It’s a poisonous ethos, largely untrammeled, and Brennan-Jobs, intentionally or not, has written more than a memoir. It’s a revelatory depiction of tech-world hypocrisy — the belief held by these men that they, in making our lives better, are beyond rebuke.

Michael Moore’s ugly marriage secrets. Michael Moore’s ex-wife is claiming that Moore was a cheap guy who stiffed his wife out of some of his millions in movie profits. The obvious comment, of course, is that no one is more cheaply vicious than a socialist with money of his own. But I had something else to say, because I’m not a very nice person.

What I have to say starts with this tweet from the New York Post:

The moment I saw the tweet, I finally figured out that, if one goes back a few decades, those two greedy Lefties could have inspired Winnie the Pooh’s nightmarish and greedy Heffalumps and Woozles:

URGENT: SS Administration Announcement Affecting Your Benefits 
 
Due to a change in Social Security regulations that took place on April 30th 2016, you can now add as much as a potential $570 to your monthly benefits… Just by contacting the SS administration and saying ONE simple  word. 

That’s an extra $6,840 a year! 
About Bookworm 853 Articles
Bookworm came late to conservativism but embraced it with passion. She's been blogging since 2004 about anything that captures her fancy -- and that's usually politics. Her blog's motto is "Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts."

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