30 January 2011
MTV originally was infamous for showing salacious and vacuous videos, which rôle has (according to the latest information that I possess, which, admittedly, is not very up-to-date) largely been filled by its evil emanation MTV3; MTV itself, which pioneered the vapid "reality" trend in television with its The Real World, now seems to devote itself chiefly to similar programming, the newest example of which is the lewd (and otherwise unwholesome) Skins. This series may soon be canceled; if so, good riddance to it, but this chapter in the sordid history of MTV confirms it as what I on the Doman Domain hereby officially pronounce it to be: the worst network on (free or basic-cable) television, ever.
17 January 2011
At the time of Nerobama's enthronement as emperor—I mean, inauguration as president—I reflected (but not in writing) about the proximity of this event to Martin Luther King, Jr., Day; I felt that I could understand Black people's succumbing to the temptation to regard the new chief executive, detestable though he is, as a secular savior. In thinking thus, however, I may have done them a disservice.
Many Black Christians, for instance, consider Obama to be the Beast in the Book of Revelation. There are also plenty of well-known Blacks who would make better presidents; I considered voting for Alan Keyes—the Republicans' nominal nominee for the senate seat won by Obombast in 2004—in the 2008 Connecticut primary, and I would happily cast my ballot for Thomas Sowell or for Clarence Thomas, were either of those men to seek our highest office. Anyway, wouldn't the ideal champion of the Black "Community" in the USA be African on both sides of his family? The fact is hardly ever mentioned (except by me), but Obama is just as much White as Black.
After the often-sad history of Blacks in the USA, it seemed too cruel a trick for Fate to play that the first (partly) Black occupant of the Oval Office should turn out to be Obama, whose inevitable failure as president might discredit worthier candidates of his father's race. But, we must bear in mind that, even if Fate doesn't love Black people, God, the creator of all mankind, does.
15 January 2011
My thoughts on the developments that followed the killings by Jared Loughner in Arizona fall into three groups:
- The media have played up this local tragedy as a "national" one, hence the single funeral for all seven victims, with our chief executive as a speaker; some commentators have even spoken of the US population as a "family" that needs healing. I certainly sympathize with and have been praying for the real families of the victims, but I don't feel that the massacre has affected me personally, for the simple reason that it hasn't; I didn't know any of the deceased, nor have I ever met the wounded or any relatives of theirs or of the deceased. I don't want to be callous, but I don't like insincerity (on my part or on anyone else's) either, and this all just impresses me as being rather overdone.
- There's been quite a contrast, hasn't there, between many leftists' reaction to this rampage and their reaction to that by Maj. Nidal Hassan at Fort Hood? They've capitalized Loughner's association with a White-supremacy organization in order to accuse Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, or anyone else who's regarded as right-wing of bearing responsibility for the massacre; even though Hassan is known to have been in contact with al-Qaeda, their speculations as to the motive for his shooting spree covered everything but the obvious, i.e., he's a jihadist. (One particularly benighted school of "thought" even incorporated an anti-war message, holding that Hassan, a psychiatrist, "snapped" as a result of having heard too many patients' narratives of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan.)
- As noted above, the President spoke at the funeral; by account of sources usually disapproving of him, he gave a good speech, perhaps the only really good one that he's ever delivered. (I wonder who wrote it.) A main reason for this is that he said “At a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who happen to think differently than we do, it's important for us to pause for a moment.” This message is true, although it would be more convincing coming from someone other than Barack "It's Bush's fault" Obama, and it ought to be noted also that this mild and unspecific rebuke (assuming that it was even meant to be one) falls far short of the strong denunciation that those who have exploited the tragic episode in Arizona for ideological purpose deserve. His words on this occasion were welcome, albeit, in my opinion, superfluous—see two paragraphs above—but there's no reason to lavish him with praise merely because he had sense enough to distance himself from libel by saying what could also have been said by a Republican (and which, if it had come from such a source, would not be regarded as especially noteworthy). As the familiar saying goes, it's always the squeaky wheel that gets the grease.
07 January 2011
Next month, a publisher called NewSouth will release new versions of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, expurgated of "nigger." I certainly don't recommend employment of that word in the Third Millennium AD, but it ought to be noted that in the days when Mark Twain wrote, literary use of "nigger" was simply a way to represent, in print, the typical Southern mispronunciation of "Negro"; not until well into the Twentieth Century did the term come to be regarded as a slur. (Joseph Conrad, who certainly was no racist, even used it in the title of one of his stories: The Nigger of the Narcissus.) It seems to me that the self-appointed revisor, one Alan Gribben, ought to devote effort instead to rewriting his name.
04 January 2011
I don't wish to be a (TEA?-)party pooper, but the arrangement arrived at by Obombast and congressional Republicans can be likened to a winless hockey team: It stinks on ice. Yes, the deal preserves the Bush-era tax rates for all brackets, but that may really be part of the problem. Don't get me wrong: I'm no advocate of high taxation unless it's necessitated by extraordinary circumstances, such as the waging of World War II, but the circumstances are extraordinary, because our elected leaders have been spending non-existent money as if World War II were still going on. I've no doubt that maintaining the current rates will help (or, at least, not hurt) the economy in the immediate future, but Uncle Sam's drunken-sailor impression must be paid for somehow and sometime; rather than reduce our all-time-world-record federal debt, the "compromise" will (officially) add $858 billion to it, and thus nearly equals the cost of the APPA of 2009 (see the list of domanisms), which, at the latest reckoning that I know of, wasted $862 billion that the USA doesn't have. Wasn't this past election all about reining in government spending?
If we're to be prudent, we must begin to fill our ever-deepening cumulative budgetary hole, and that means that taxes must be raised sooner or later. (And when they're raised, they ought, in accordance with the Equal Protection Clause in the Constitution under which our country ostensibly is governed, to be raised openly on everyone. Let's have none of this "tax the rich" demagoguery that leftists always use to bamboozle the public into voting for them.) "Sooner" is preferable to "later," because, among other reasons, the fact that so many of the bonds that we've issued (as a form of deficit spending) are held by the People's Republic of China means that our current situation is a security risk as well as a fiscal fiasco.
It remains to be observed that Obombast might not be so much of a loser, in his negotiations with Republicans of the lame-
duck brained Congress, as his fellow Democrats think. He may have yielded on whether to include those detested upper-income earners in the prolonging of the tax reductions, but the lack of higher taxes in the Oh-God-Not-Another "Stimulus" could turn out to be to his or to other Democrats' political advantage. The current levels of taxation are in place for only another two years, i.e., until after the next presidential-election year; thus, should our emperor be dethroned in 2012, whichever Republican takes his place may have a choice between getting the blame for tax increases and getting the blame for unpaid debt. In my opinion, the Republicans ought to have simply allowed the tax cuts of the Bush years to expire, and Obombast to suffer the consequences.
Having said all the preceding, I have my doubts that the bloated US debt will ever even begin to be paid off, since politicians, fearing for the future of their careers, would rather do what's irresponsible than what's responsible but unpopular with voters. What did you expect from an uncommon commentary: optimism about the future of the USA?