Patterico's Pontifications


Patterico on “The Stage Right Show” Tonight

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:12 pm

It’s a Blog Talk Radio show run by Larry O’Connor, the excellent contributor to several of Andrew Breitbart’s sites. Larry did the heavy lifting on the unraveling of Max Blumenthal’s recent smear piece on James O’Keefe.

I’ll be on at 10 p.m. PST, following on the heels of Brad Friedman of the “Brad Blog,” who goes on at 9 p.m.

Based on what we’ve seen from Friedman’s blog lately, you’re likely to get about one hour of Friedman’s nonsense and misrepresentations, and one hour of me trying to clean them up.

Listen live online here, and feel free to call in at 347-850-1946.

UPDATE: The same link has an archived version of the show. Also, it can be accessed on iTunes.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, if you’re a leftist), my phone’s sound was terrible and it’s very hard to hear what I’m saying. However, I did get Brad Friedman to admit that — notwithstanding his disingenuous calls for the unedited video — he has never bothered to listen to the full unedited audio that has been available for months. In addition, he admitted that he was completely unaware that there is a Philly video that disproves the ACORN claims that they were never told that Giles was a prostitute.

In short, Brad Friedman doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He doesn’t know anything about this scandal. He doesn’t even know that O’Keefe represented himself as a pimp to ACORN employees. He doesn’t understand the scandal; he doesn’t know the facts; and he’s really nothing more than a clueless blowhard.

I hope you were able to glean that from the audio.

UPDATE x2: Listening to the podcast, I hear that Friedman saved his worst (and most dishonest) shots on me until after I left. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. He was on with me for, what, 40 minutes? and didn’t lay a glove on me. I shoved every argument he made right down his throat.

So why not wait until I’m off the phone to take your best shot?

Quote of the day: “I don’t have a partisan agenda here.”

New Jersey Governor Declares State of Fiscal Emergency

Filed under: Economics — DRJ @ 8:11 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Last week, Governor Chris Christie declared a state of fiscal emergency in response to New Jersey’s looming $2.2B deficit:

“Calling New Jersey on “the edge of bankruptcy,” Gov. Chris Christie today [2/11/2010] declared a fiscal emergency, seizing broad powers to freeze aid to more than 500 school districts and cut from higher education, hospitals and the Public Advocate.

“New Jersey has been steaming toward financial disaster for years,” the Republican governor said in a speech to both houses of the Legislature. “The people elected us to end the talk and to act decisively. Today is the day for the complaining to end and for statesmanship to begin.”
“I take no joy in having to make these decisions. I know these judgments will affect fellow New Jerseyans and will hurt,” Christie said. “This is not a happy moment. However, what choices do we have left?”

Here is a breakdown of Christie’s proposed cuts.

Democrats complained about the hardship caused by cuts to schools during a school year, but Christie responded that the time to act is now. He noted the State’s “fiscal year ends in June, when it is required by law to have a balanced budget, unlike the federal government.”


Texas vs the U.S.

Filed under: Environment,Government — DRJ @ 5:41 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Texas has filed a petition in federal court challenging the EPA’s endangerment finding for greenhouse gases:

“The state has filed a Petition for Review with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and will also file a Petition for Reconsideration with the Environmental Protection Agency, asking the administrator to review her decision. The state’s legal action indicates EPA’s Endangerment Finding is legally unsupported because the agency outsourced its scientific assessment to the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which has been discredited by evidence of key scientists’ lack of objectivity, coordinated efforts to hide flaws in their research, attempts to keep contravening evidence out of IPCC reports and violation of freedom of information laws.”

I wonder if there will be discovery and, if so, whether they will depose Phil Jones? [EDIT: Probably not. The pleadings indicate it is an appellate proceeding.]

The New York Times is not impressed, labeling the petitioners as a group of “global warming skeptics.”


Torture and Mullah Barador

Filed under: Obama,Terrorism — DRJ @ 5:23 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

So, Mullah Barador is being tortured now?

It’s okay. President Obama’s ban on torture doesn’t apply to rendition programs or to CIA detention “facilities used only to hold people on a short-term, transitory basis.”

Glenn Greenwald and Andrew Sullivan wonder what will stop future Presidents from re-authorizing waterboarding and similar Bush-era interrogation techniques. The answer, of course, is that effectively Obama already has.


SEK: Conservative Rhetoric Made Murdered Abortion Doctor a Target

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:46 am

In a cheap argument that I would have thought unworthy of him, Scott Eric Kaufman tries to tar all conservatives with the murder of an abortion doctor:

Nidal Hasan didn’t consider himself a liberal, nor did he devote himself to liberal causes—he was, it seems, someone with pretensions to Islamic jihad. Scott Roeder, however, shot George Tiller in the service of a mainstream conservative cause. The difference, obviously, is not in the media’s furtherance of a narrative, but in the non-incidental relation of particular ideologies with acts of violence.

What utter nonsense. There is a difference between pursuing a goal and condoning a violent method of achieving that goal.

Nidal Hasan did indeed devote himself to a liberal cause: getting America out of its wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He chose a violent method of pursuing that goal — a method that most liberals in this country don’t condone. Similarly, while Scott Roeder may have been devoted to the elimination of partial-birth abortion, his method of pursuing that goal is condemned by the overwhelming number of conservatives in this country.

Kaufman continues:

Conservatives complain 1) when liberals ask that any brown person with a funny name not be labeled a jihadist until evidence of such is unearthed, and 2) when mainstream news outlets link the murder of prominent abortion doctors to conservative causes. They fail to see the lack of equivalence: liberals don’t espouse jihad against the United States, but conservatives do inspire those on their fringes to engage in politically motivated violence. The politics of the George Tiller murder are an indictment against conservative rhetoric because that rhetoric made Tiller a target . . .

No, Roeder’s own radical beliefs and screwed-up values system made Tiller a target.

What SEK does is to conflate a goal with an acceptable means of getting there. The fact that a homicidal maniac shares your goals doesn’t make you responsible for his methods. Yet that is the cheap argument made by the David Niewerts of the world — and now, the Scott Eric Kaufmans.

Is it fair to say that I “inspired” Scott Roeder’s actions if I have engaged in full-throated condemnation of partial-birth abortion (and I have)? If I accurately describe the horrific acts of violence involved in that monstrous process, does that rhetoric “make” an abortion doctor a “target”?

If you’re going to say that, Scott, then your side is going to have to take responsibility for the Nidal Hasans of this world after all. By that logic, liberals have inspired Nidal Hasan by making irresponsible claims about Bush waging war for oil. (Can I just ask: where is our damn oil?) Tim Rutten has made innocent people targets by falsely claiming that Dick Cheney has admitted supporting torture.

The list goes on. Indeed, these cited examples are even more worthy of condemnation than conservative rhetoric against partial-birth abortion, because these are examples of dishonesty and exaggeration.

SEK’s argument is equivalent to the position that one who honestly advocated against the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq “inspired” Nidal Hasan and made the Fort Hood victims a target.

This is irresponsible demagoguery. This cheap argument will backfire on your side, Scott. I expect it from the David Niewerts. I really didn’t expect it from you.

Glories of the Welfare State: British Mom Gets $125K Per Year Handout to Live in Mansion?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:11 am

John Stossel finds an article in the Daily Mail about a woman receiving an eye-opening level of benefits from the government:

A single mother-of-six is getting more than £80,000 [$125,000] a year from the taxpayer to live in a £2million mansion in an exclusive London suburb.

Essma Marjam, 34, is given almost £7,000 a month in housing benefits to pay the rent on the five-bedroom villa just yards from Sir Paul McCartney’s house and Lord’s cricket ground.

She also receives an estimated £15,000 a year in other payouts, such as child benefit, to help look after her children, aged from five months to 14.

The four-storey house in Maida Vale has five bedrooms, two bathrooms, a double living room… two large flat-screen televisions …

It’s not fraud, if it’s true. (Well, it is the Daily Mail.) Stossel warns that President Obama has praised the “social safety net that exists in almost all of Europe that doesn’t exist in the United States.”

If this is what Obama wants to set up here . . . well, what could possibly go wrong? Let’s set up Octomom in the Hearst Castle at taxpayer expense!

Meanwhile, the EU is deciding whether to bail out Greece, a country that has engaged in profligate spending well beyond its means. Spain and Portugal may not be far behind, and the Germans are not thrilled:

“Just like Obama is not going to let a systemic bank fail, Europe is not going to kick the wayward out of the system,” said Josef Joffe, the publisher of the weekly newspaper Die Zeit. But he added that the reason for that could not be kept from the voters.

“Europe has become a huge welfare state for everybody, for states as well as individuals,” he said.

It’s time to be concerned when German newspaper publishers see the problem, but our president doesn’t.

P.S. Read “Stossel’s Take” here. It seems to be a new blog, and will likely be a good one.

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