Patterico's Pontifications


Jerry Brown Challenges Chris Christie to Fitness Contest

Filed under: General,Morons — Patterico @ 1:34 pm

I hereby challenge the fattest guy I can think of to a fitness contest!

“I’ve slowed down a little bit, but I have to tell you — I ran three miles in 29 minutes two nights ago,” Brown said last week. “I hereby challenge Gov. Christie to a three-mile race, a push-up contest and a chin-up contest. Whatever he wants to bet, I have no doubt of the outcome.”

Brown says he is responding to Christie calling him an “old retread” — and willfully misinterprets this as an attack on Brown’s fitness, so he can take a cheap shot at Christie’s weight.

Once you see that Brown’s excuse for this is trumped-up, Brown’s gambit seems pretty amusing. He’s taking the most out-of-shape guy he can find in politics and challenges him to a fitness contest. That would be like Christie, a great speaker, issuing a debate challenge to the stupidest guy in politics. (Which is Joe Biden.)

Proud, proud I am to be a Californian with Governor Moonbeam in office.


San Francisco Based State Legislator Fights “Deport the Criminals First” Policy

Filed under: Deport the Criminals First,General,Immigration,Morons — Patterico @ 3:02 pm

Ah, San Francisco:

A bill being drafted by a state legislator would limit local law enforcement from holding arrestees on behalf of immigration authorities seeking to deport them.

Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) said he is finalizing amendments to a bill that would be the first statewide measure to counter the Secure Communities enforcement program, which requires law enforcement agencies to forward to immigration authorities the fingerprints of all arrestees booked into local jails.

If those authorities identify a candidate for deportation, they can issue a detainer, which asks the agency to hold them beyond the time when they would normally be released so immigration agents can take custody. The program has come under fire because many of those ensnared have never been convicted of crimes or are low-level offenders.

When states like California or Arizona have tried to pass legislation that helps the federal government enforce federal immigration law, the immigrants’ rights advocates always tell us those law are illegal — because federal law is supreme in the area of immigration. So, local laws can’t touch on immigration (so the argument goes) because that steps on federal toes.

(I have never understood this argument, because helping the feds enforce the law can’t be seen as stepping on their toes . . . can it??)

Where is the “federal preemption” crowd here? This law explicitly seeks to interfere with federal programs designed to catch people in custody who have violated our immigration laws. Wouldn’t that . . . step on federal toes?

What needs to be remembered is that people who are subject to deportation have already violated the law. What’s more, if they have been arrested, they are on average more likely to be among the least desirable among those who have violated our immigration laws. A “Deport the Criminals First” policy uses our limited resources in the manner that best protects public safety, by concentrating on people who have (by and large) committed crimes other than violating immigration laws. Because criminals are more dangerous than non-criminals, this policy saves lives. And even if it turns out that they didn’t commit other crimes, they still violated immigration laws anyway, and we have them in custody.

Ammiano’s plan is an open borders plan: EVERYONE is welcome, including the diseased, the immoral, and the criminal. Our country is a country of immigrants, but we have the right to control which immigrants are allowed to enter, to keep the country healthy and safe. Orderly immigration laws seek to import immigrants who are not criminals or afflicted with communicable diseases. A policy of simply throwing open the borders removes these checks, which has the effect of welcoming people with TB and serious criminal histories. I don’t see why our country needs to be burdened with a crop of undesirables (criminals) when we have insufficient resources to take care of the people we already have.

The U.S. is fishing for illegals. We can’t catch every fish in the sea, but we can catch some. Ammiano wants to take the fish that are already in the net and throw them back out to sea. That only makes sense if you think fishing is morally wrong.

Me, I don’t think it is. And I don’t think deporting criminal illegals is wrong either.

But then, I don’t live in San Francisco.


Good Thing We Dumped That Body Right Away . . .

Filed under: Morons,Terrorism — Patterico @ 10:56 pm

. . . before conducting an autopsy or giving journalists a chance to take independent photos or footage.

Because otherwise, Al Qaeda might have gotten upset at us.


Obama Intelligence Guy: Muslim Brotherhood Is Largely Secular

Filed under: Morons — Patterico @ 6:48 am

So what were you worried about?

The term “Muslim Brotherhood”…is an umbrella term for a variety of movements, in the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence and has decried Al Qaeda as a perversion of Islam.

Yuh-huh. Hot Air quotes Politico:

The Brotherhood uses the slogan, “Islam is the answer,” and generally advocates for government in accordance with Islamic principles. The movement has as a broad goal unifying what it perceives as Muslim lands, from Spain to Indonesia, as a “caliphate.”

The group also has ties to Hamas.

Watch and weep:

Clapper is the same dude who in December did not know about the London terror plot when asked by Diane Sawyer. His spokesmouth has issued this “clarification”:

“To clarify Director Clapper’s point – in Egypt the Muslim Brotherhood makes efforts to work through a political system that has been, under Mubarak’s rule, one that is largely secular in its orientation – he is well aware that the Muslim Brotherhood is not a secular organization.”

To “clarify,” then, it’s a “largely secular” group that is “not a secular organization.” Just so we’re clear.

What’s next? “Al What-a?”

UPDATE: Here’s what’s next — or, at least, what was happening at the same time. Namely, the CIA director making predictions based on what he saw on teevee:

The director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Leon E. Panetta, testified before the House of Representatives on Thursday morning that there was a “strong likelihood” that Mr. Mubarak would step down by the end of the day.

American officials said Mr. Panetta was basing his statement not on secret intelligence but on media broadcasts, which began circulating before he sat down before the House Intelligence Committee.

We are in the very best of hands.


Quote of the Day

Filed under: Dog Trainer,Morons — Patterico @ 9:53 pm

From Tim Rutten:

The Huffington Post is a brilliantly packaged product with a particular flair for addressing the cultural and entertainment tastes of its overwhelmingly liberal audience. To grasp its business model, though, you need to picture a galley rowed by slaves and commanded by pirates.

Back in the days of Jim Crow and sharecroppers, it was common to hear poor exploited blacks say to one another: “At least we’re not having to write for the Huffington Post!”


AOL Buys HuffPo for $315 Million

Filed under: Blogging Matters,General,Morons — Patterico @ 7:31 am

Since they get 500 million page views per month, that’s about $0.63 per monthly page view.


That caused me to run a few numbers here. Over the past year we received 5,041,591 page views, for a monthly average of 420,133. Multiply that by $0.63 and you get a web site worth $264,683.

AOL finance dudes, listen up! Bargain of a lifetime: I’ll unload this puppy for a cool $200,000.

Call me, babe.

UPDATE: A commenter caught me cooking the numbers by turning the fraction upside down. Busted. I am changing the post to reflect the correct numbers. Dude, you just cost me over $400,000!

UPDATE: I should not have trusted the commenter. The actual number is not 57 cents, as he claimed, but 63. I updated the numbers yet again.


L.A. Times: How Dare Escondido Target Illegal Aliens Who Have Done Nothing But Be Illegal Aliens . . . And, Er, Drunk Drivers and Child Molesters?

Filed under: Deport the Criminals First,Dog Trainer,General,Immigration,Morons — Patterico @ 3:56 pm

The city of Escondido in California is concentrating on deporting illegal aliens with a criminal record.

If you cover this story, you can choose to illustrate the effects by giving anecdotes concerning: a) a person who was victimized by an illegal alien criminal; b) an anecdote of a low-level offender who will be deported — poor guy!

Which do you figure the L.A. Times chooses?

If you guessed b), you win! Meaning you are not a complete moron.

It was just an inconvenient traffic stop on the way through town for Javier Barrera Saldivar. Police had spotted the broken tail light on his car, and he figured he’d get a fix-it ticket and be on his way. But federal immigration officers soon rolled up, wielding handcuffs and Barrera’s mug shot on a cellphone.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers have been stationed at the Police Department of this San Diego County city since May, responding to everything from traffic stops to gang sweeps in an aggressive effort to clear the community of illegal immigrants with deportation orders or criminal records.

Barrera, 24, the records showed, was a previously deported illegal immigrant with convictions for drunk driving and possessing a false driver’s license. Instead of receiving a traffic citation and being released — which is what typically would have occurred — he was arrested and placed in deportation proceedings.

We get the typical claptrap about racial profiling and about how Latinos are “on edge.” We don’t get ANY context about why the government might actually want to Deport the Criminals First.

The story reinforces the theme: some of these people have done nothing more than be illegal immigrants. Uh, and drunk drivers. Uh, and child molesters. WHY DON’T WE GO AFTER THE “REAL” CRIMINALS??!!!1!!1

But critics contend that most detainees are people with drunk driving convictions from long ago who are hardly criminals.

. . . .

When Salvador Santoyo Juarez, 61, was pulled over last month for a having tinted windows in his car, an immigration check revealed that he had convictions for child molestation, drug transportation and drunk driving — all more than 20 years old.

To his family, the grandfather of eight was hardly a threat to the community, spending most of his days resting his injured hip in front of the television. His wife, Carmen, 54, said his deportation would tear the family apart. “There are so many bad people, and they focus on the one who does nothing,” she said. “How sad.”

Yeah, some of them are “only” illegal alien drunk drivers. Never mind that the government has the authority and duty to deport any illegal alien it comes in contact with — regardless of whether they have committed other crimes. Place that issue to one side for the moment.

And ask yourself: does this article have any stories about people killed by illegal alien drunk drivers? It’s not like those stories don’t exist. For example, the paper could tell us about any of these people who were killed by illegal alien drunk drivers:

  • Sara Cole was “lucky.” She lived, and “only” had her legs crushed.

I am, of course, just scratching the surface.

It’s like the article I wrote about this morning, which attacks Sarah Palin for “partisanship” when she talks about runaway spending. If the paper is going to savage people for trying to do something about a problem, without even reminding us why we consider the problem to be a real problem, the editors aren’t doing their job.

This paper is failing, fast. As far as I am concerned, it can’t be fast enough.


Unbelievable: Twain Scholar Plans to Publish Edition of Huckleberry Finn Omitting the N-Word

Filed under: General,Morons,Race — Patterico @ 7:42 pm

Publisher’s Weekly reports on an astonishing Orwellian cave-in to political correctness: a proposal to remove the words “nigger” and “Injun” from “Huckleberry Finn”:

Mark Twain’s Adventures of Huckleberry Finn is a classic by most any measure—T.S. Eliot called it a masterpiece, and Ernest Hemingway pronounced it the source of “all modern American literature.” Yet, for decades, it has been disappearing from grade school curricula across the country, relegated to optional reading lists, or banned outright, appearing again and again on lists of the nation’s most challenged books, and all for its repeated use of a single, singularly offensive word: “nigger.”

Twain himself defined a “classic” as “a book which people praise and don’t read.” Rather than see Twain’s most important work succumb to that fate, Twain scholar Alan Gribben and NewSouth Books plan to release a version of Huckleberry Finn, in a single volume with The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, that does away with the “n” word (as well as the “in” word, “Injun”) by replacing it with the word “slave.”

This sort of silliness is nothing new; I noted in 2003 that the NAACP (whose acronym includes a reference to the racist word “colored”!) objected to “To Kill a Mockingbird” on the basis that it contains the dreaded n-word. And we watched with amusement as New York City sought to “ban” the word in 2007.

But the saddest part of this story is that the guy behind the whitewashing considers himself to be a Twain scholar:

“This is not an effort to render Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn colorblind,” said Gribben, speaking from his office at Auburn University at Montgomery, where he’s spent most of the past 20 years heading the English department. “Race matters in these books. It’s a matter of how you express that in the 21st century.”

The idea of a more politically correct Finn came to the 69-year-old English professor over years of teaching and outreach, during which he habitually replaced the word with “slave” when reading aloud. Gribben grew up without ever hearing the “n” word (“My mother said it’s only useful to identify [those who use it as] the wrong kind of people”) and became increasingly aware of its jarring effect as he moved South and started a family. “My daughter went to a magnet school and one of her best friends was an African-American girl. She loathed the book, could barely read it.”

. . . .

“What he suggested,” said La Rosa, “was that there was a market for a book in which the n-word was switched out for something less hurtful, less controversial. We recognized that some people would say that this was censorship of a kind, but our feeling is that there are plenty of other books out there—all of them, in fact—that faithfully replicate the text, and that this was simply an option for those who were increasingly uncomfortable, as he put it, insisting students read a text which was so incredibly hurtful.”

One should not have to explain to a Twain scholar that the hurtful nature of the word “nigger” is the whole fucking point. But you can’t argue with a guy who thinks he is saving the book by destroying it:

“Dr. Gribben recognizes that he’s putting his reputation at stake as a Twain scholar,” said La Rosa. “But he’s so compassionate, and so believes in the value of teaching Twain, that he’s committed to this major departure. I almost don’t want to acknowledge this, but it feels like he’s saving the books. His willingness to take this chance—I was very touched.”

Hm. It feels to me like, instead of saving the book, he is working to actively destroy it — not just the book and its central message, but the notion of authorial integrity, the idea of confronting injustice head on, and about a dozen other critical concepts.

It’s enough to make you want to scream in frustration. Slapping the “morons” tag on this post doesn’t feel sufficient; stuff like this makes me want to create a new category called “Utter and Complete Fucking Morons.”

I know that language may seem a little rough . . . but again: that’s the whole fucking point.

UPDATE: I have just received word of Gribben’s next project: a new version of Orwell’s “1984” that will replace the disturbing term “doublethink” with the more soothing term “harmonious cogitation.”

UPDATE x2: See also: Michelle Malkin.


Ahhnold Reduces Sentence of Fabian Nunez’s Son

Filed under: Crime,General,Morons — Patterico @ 6:49 pm

Without even consulting the D.A.:

San Diego County District Atty. Bonnie Dumanis said Monday she was shocked to learn that then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger had reduced the prison sentence of the son of former Assembly Speaker Fabian Nuñez.

The decision “greatly diminishes justice for victim Luis Santos and re-victimizes his family and friends,” Dumanis said in a prepared statement. “The district attorney’s office was not consulted, and the decision comes as the appeals process was continuing.”

I am currently preparing an opposition to a clemency request. It is standard procedure to consult the District Attorney’s Office before considering such a request. I have heard a top trial lawyer in our office talk about presenting the case against Tookie Williams’s commutation to Ahhnold, and guess what? he told the Governator a few things he hadn’t known.

But apparently close analysis of the case was not an important part of this particular process:

Like Dumanis, Fred Santos [the victim’s father] said he had no warning that the decision was imminent or even under discussion at the governor’s office. “We’re just little people,” he said. “I guess we don’t count.”

Charles Sevilla, the San Diego attorney who prepared the commutation request for Esteban Nuñez, said he is “surprised and gratified” that it was accepted by the governor.

. . . .

Sevilla said his role was limited to filling out the paperwork — “sort of a fill in the blanks.” He said he was never quizzed by the governor or his staff, never asked to be part of an oral presentation and never asked for additional documentation.

Gee. If it wasn’t a close look at the facts of the case that persuaded Ahhnold, what could it possibly have been? An L.A. Times editorial has a hint:

Nuñez, who is now a business partner with Schwarzenegger’s chief political advisor, worked closely with the governor during his term as speaker.

Ah, I see now.

Ahhnold’s decision mocks the justice system. His handling of the clemency process in this case reeks of disinterest for the facts, and concern for a crony. Even the L.A. Times editorial writer — who is a sucker for the pathetic claims of innocence of a Death Row inmate who is guilty as sin (more in an upcoming post) — is skeptical of Ahhnold’s decision:

The younger Nuñez is no prince. He and his friends went looking for a fight after being kicked out of a campus frat party, and according to prosecutors, Nuñez stabbed two other victims, who survived. He also allegedly destroyed evidence by burning clothing worn on the night of the fight and throwing knives into the Sacramento River.

When you can’t even convince the editors of the L.A. Times to be lenient with a violent criminal, you’ve really gone off the rails. Ahhnold.

Thanks to Bradley J. Fikes.


We Have a Budget Deal!

Filed under: Morons,Scum — Patterico @ 8:56 pm

And it’s almost certainly a huge pile of [string of expletives deleted]!

A spokesman for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Thursday that state lawmakers and the governor have reached a “framework of an agreement” on solving California’s longest-ever state budget impasse.

“The governor and the leaders have reached a framework of an agreement. We will continue to work through the details over the weekend and hope to come to a final agreement Monday when they reconvene,” said Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear. He declined to provide any details.

Oh, I think I can provide the details. Without knowing any of them.

Kick the can down the road, by borrowing more money, and deferring the hard decisions until next year.

Sound about right?

Anyone frustrated enough to punch their computer screen right about now?

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