Worst Album Covers Ever
Well, they're right, these are the Worst Album Covers Ever.
I especially like the pedophile's favorite album third from the bottom, Julie's Sixteenth Birthday.
The braindroppings of the Kaufmans and selected others.
Well, they're right, these are the Worst Album Covers Ever.
Last night my wife (Susan) and I attended a ceremony at which my son (David Kaufman, for those ignorant few who don't alrady know) was presented an award by Judge Judith Kaye (the top honcho judge in NY State) on behalf of the Legal Aid Society.
Hee. I really don't have time. But this was too good.
I'm incredibly busy today, but I just wanted to put this out there. OpinionJournal - Extra.
I was going to blog about another Victor Davis Hanson article today, but it can wait. I read this one today and was simultaneously elated by his clarity and devastated by its implications. I keep seeing so much evidence of anti-semitism that I am no longer shocked, but rather, a bit unhinged. But if there is a silver lining in this, or at least a ray of hope, it is that there are so many non-Jews, like Hanson (and Sullivan and many others) who see what is going on, are equally alarmed by it, and are talking about it again, and again, and again.
"These are weird, weird times, and before we win this messy war against Islamic fascism and its sponsors, count on things to get even uglier. Don't expect any reasoned military analysis that puts the post-9/11 destruction of the Taliban and Saddam Hussein's evil regime, along with the liberation of 50 million at the cost of 300 American lives, in any sort of historical context. After all, in the current presidential race, a retired general now caricatures U.S. efforts in Iraq and quotes Al Sharpton.
Do not look for the Islamic community here to acknowledge that the United States, in little over a decade, freed Kuwait, saved most of the Bosnians and Kosovars, tried to feed Somalis, urged the Russians not to kill Chechnyans, belatedly ensured that no longer were Shiites and Kurds to be slaughtered in Iraq, spoke out against Kuwait's ethnic cleansing of a third of a million Palestinians — and now is spending $87 billion to make Iraqis free.
That the Arab world would appreciate billions of dollars in past American aid to Jordan, Egypt, and the Palestinian Authority, or thank America for its help in Kuwait and Kosovo, or be grateful to America for freeing Iraq — all this is about as plausible as the idea that Western Europeans would acknowledge their past salvation from Nazism and Soviet Communism, or be grateful for the role the United States plays to promote democracy in Panama, Haiti, the Balkans, or the Middle East.
No, in this depressing age, the real problem is apparently our support for democratic Israel and all those pesky Jews worldwide, who seem to crop up everywhere as sly war makers, grasping film executives, conspiratorial politicians, and greedy colonialists, and thus make life so difficult for the rest of us.
So said the wise sage and loveable Papa Kaufman on Tom Friedman many months ago when I commented favorably on one of Friedman's articles. Well, time and Thomas largely coincided again today with this article, entitled appropriately, "It's No Vietnam." He first grabbed me with this passage:
"The great irony is that the Baathists and Arab dictators are opposing the U.S. in Iraq because — unlike many leftists — they understand exactly what this war is about. They understand that U.S. power is not being used in Iraq for oil, or imperialism, or to shore up a corrupt status quo, as it was in Vietnam and elsewhere in the Arab world during the cold war. They understand that this is the most radical-liberal revolutionary war the U.S. has ever launched — a war of choice to install some democracy in the heart of the Arab-Muslim world."He then followed it with something you can only find in a Post-Raines NYTimes:
"Most of the troubles we have encountered in Iraq (and will in the future) are not because of "occupation" but because of "empowerment." The U.S. invasion has overturned a whole set of vested interests, particularly those of Iraq's Sunni Baathist establishment, and begun to empower instead a whole new set of actors: Shiites, Kurds, non-Baathist Sunnis, women and locally elected officials and police. The Qaeda nihilists, the Saddamists, and all the Europeans and the Arab autocrats who had a vested interest in the old status quo are threatened by this."Outstanding stuff and right on the money. But alas, time moves on and the clock reveals itself to still be what it is most of the time...broken; Tommy just couldn't help but slam Bush and cast angst-ridden doubt on Bush's ability to follow through:
Can this administration, whose national security team is so divided, effectively stay the course in Iraq? Has the president's audacity in waging such a revolutionary war outrun his ability to articulate what it's about and to summon Americans for the sacrifices victory will require? Can the president really be a successful radical liberal on Iraq, while being such a radical conservative everywhere else — refusing to dismiss one of his own generals who insults Islam, turning a deaf ear to hints of corruption infecting the new Baghdad government as it's showered with aid dollars, calling on reservists and their families to bear all the burdens of war while slashing taxes for the rich, and undertaking the world's biggest nation-building project with few real allies?Did he just feel he had to throw in this littany to re-establish his left credentials? What the hell does tax policy have to do with an analysis of whether Bush has the staying power for Iraq? Is his foreign policy team that divided? Calling up reservists is wrong because.... (in fact, doesn't it demonstrate his conviction). Look, PLENTY of administration mistakes to talk about. But this was just an add on. And a badly thought-through add on. Whatever one thinks of Bush, only the loopiest would conclude that he invaded and overthrew TWO Muslim countries for political gain. The political risk involved in these ventures, particularly Iraq, where HUGE. And still are. Bush isn't playing politics here. And Thomas just can't fathom that.
Hee, hee. According to the BBC:
An organisation in Israel has gained rabbinical approval to train pigs to guard Jewish settlements in the West Bank. Until now, Jewish settlements have been guarded by men with guns and also by guard dogs.
But a new idea - guard pigs - has been thought up by an organisation called The Hebrew Battalion.
The man in charge, Kuti Ben-Yaakov, insists it is a serious proposal.
"Pigs' sense of smell is far more developed than that of dogs," he said.
"The pigs will also be able to identify weapons from huge distances, and walk in the direction of the terrorist, thereby pointing him out.
"Moreover, this animal is considered to be dangerous by Islam and, according to the Muslim faith, a terrorist who touches a pig is not eligible for the 70 virgins in heaven."
Among other things, Lileks's take on The Hokey Pokey, that childhood classic which my mother routinely used to pull me out of a sulk, by fooling me into doing the damned thing.
Dennis Prager has an interesting take on Mel Gibson's new movie, The Passion.
Sigh. Evidently Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, and Danny DeVito will be traveling to Israel "in the belief that their charms will work magic on the Israeli-Arab conflict."
Many Palestinians do not even have television sets. What is more, for the past three years here no one has listened to anyone, so what makes these people think they will listen to Danny DeVito?"
From Dave Barry's Blog:
Maybe this has been said before, but i just realized the unifying factor of this World Series: No one with half a brain wants to be anywhere near the traffic when the games let out. This World Series has succeeded in combining the two worst sets of drivers in the world in it's fans: New Yorkers and Floridians. It's only a matter of time before some poor Marlins fan on his way home from a game and in the left lane of I-95 doing 40 with his turn signal on is run down by a Yankees fan doing 'Warp 7' and is surprised that an accident occurred because, after all, 'He should have heard me coming, I've been leaning on my horn for the past mile and a half.'
Just an observation.
-- Daniel 'Nude Klan, Hi!' Kuhn (or possibly 'Unkind Heal')
The Wall Street Journal discovers that PBS is biased leftward.
The headline on line in the New York Times reads:
Bush Is Heckled in Australian ParliamentFour paragraphs in you read
"With thousands of anti-war demonstrators protesting outside the building and two hecklers jeering him from within, ... (emphasis added).Always best to read the fine print....
This is how you treat your father???? Ah, me.... the Fifth Commandment seems no longer to have any meaning whatsoever.......
Evan Coyne Maloney, a guy who goes to protests and interviews people, often showing their relative ignorance about the subject they're supposedly very up in arms about, went to the Palestinian Solidarity Conference near Rutgers University earlier this month, and reports that he was physically attacked at the rally.
Even before the first speaker addressed the rally, people walked among the attendees, once again pointing us out as "Zionists". One protester came up to the camera and started blocking it with his sign. When I moved the camera several feet away, and the protester followed and again obstructed the view. I moved again, and he followed again. I tried raising the camera above the sign, but he just raised his sign.
We started asking him why he was trying to censor us. (One of the complaints made by the protesters was that the university tried to censor them. But if they were so sensitive to censorship, why were they trying to do it to me?) He didn't have an answer. I asked again while moving the camera, and again, no response. The commotion attracted a group of protesters, who surrounded me and blocked the camera's view in all directions.
Once again, I tried to move, but I was now completely encircled. When I tried to escape, the protesters then started smacking the camera with their signs, while others were shoving me from different directions. I started retreating, pushing my way back from the loudspeaker, all the while leaving the camera running and asking the protesters why they weren't letting me film. One man tried to prevent me from getting audio by unleashing a high-pitched squeal into the microphone. Another man asked me whether my camera was expensive, a question that--under the circumstances--I interpreted as a veiled threat.
Alexis and Tim also had cameras and were able to snap some stills and shoot few seconds of video. But they, too, were set upon by protesters. When they tried to use their cameras, protesters would put signs in the way. They dodged and weaved like basketball players, but at each turn, they were stopped. One protester with a masked face lunged at Alexis, threatening to break her camera and telling her, "I'm gonna kick your fucking ass." She was also hit by signs.
I just discoved this blog: Jukebox From Hell which helpfully lists the most horrible, wretched, evil songs of all time.
My father, who doesn't feel like blogging this himself, writes:
It just goes to show you that no matter how brilliant a person is (and my son, David, is unquestionably one of the most brilliant, most humorous, best looking and all around good guys of all time), when it comes to music, he has an incurable blind spot.
Of course, the mere mention of that vile TAYR..... song (I cant even complete the intitials) has now caused me to go into a humming fit that makes me want to jump out of the window. However, "Afternoon Delight" is one of the great songs of all times. It brings back sunlit memories of law school, strolling in Georgetown and more innocent times.
David can be a disappointment at times!
Management Recruiters of Great Neck
Prepare to waste a huge amount of time.
According to Paul Krugman, it's Bush's fault that the Prime Minister of Malaysia had his anti-semitic hissy fit the other day.
"Now Mr. Mahathir thinks that to cover his domestic flank, he must insert hateful words into a speech mainly about Muslim reform. That tells you, more accurately than any poll, just how strong the rising tide of anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism among Muslims in Southeast Asia has become. Thanks to its war in Iraq and its unconditional support for Ariel Sharon, Washington has squandered post-9/11 sympathy and brought relations with the Muslim world to a new low.Amazing. It never occured to me. If we just had Bill Clinton (or anyone other than the religious zealot Bush) in the White House, there wouldn't be rising anti-semitism in the Muslim world. So simple.
My heros. Really. I like people who buck the trend, as a principal, ... or at least those that use their head. Various writers with leftish instincts supported the war, the most obvious being Hitchens and Paul Berman (if you haven't read his book, Terror and Liberalism, stop everything and buy it now. No really).
Appropos to David's story below concerning Stuart's total aversion to a certain song, here's an anecdote about TAYRRTOOT and Stuart. It's absolutely true.
Robert Prather publishes what he says is an email from a Marine stationed in Baghdad, who reports on a woman who lost her whole family in the war. From American bombing? Nope.
While [she was] at work Sadamm's men had come to her house and because her family was Christian, Sadamm's men felt that the family would side with the US. So they shot her father, mother, and 3 sisters in the head. They came looking for her but the owner of the hotel hid her till the US troops showed up and took her to her house where her family was still in the yard. She buried them and now lives in the hotel. She runs the computers here and is very grateful to be alive and loves the US.
David Bernstein writes over at The Volokh Conspiracy about irritating bumper stickers:
Least favorite: "It'll be a great day when schools have all the money they need and the Air Force has to have a bake sale to buy a bomber."
Close second: "You can't hug a child with nuclear arms."
Evidently, some professor has done a study of what he calls "earworms" -- those songs that get stuck in your head FOREVER!!!!!
Last year, he surveyed about 500 students, faculty and staff on campus asking about the type, frequency and duration of earworms, and possible causes and cures. Among the songs respondents picked as most likely to become stuck were: “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” the Chili’s restaurant “baby back ribs” jingle and “Who Let the Dogs Out.”
But the choice that topped the so-called “playlist from hell” was “Other,” meaning the majority of those surveyed chose a unique song of their own as the most probable earworm. That led Kellaris to conclude that stuck songs are highly idiosyncratic.
“There are certain tunes that we would describe as catchy that are more likely to become one, but just about anything can become an earworm,” he said.
Turns out that The Thing from The Fantastic Four is Jewish.
An old story by now, but the spasms caused by Gregg Easterbrook's blog on the responsibility of Jewish Hollywood executives for movie violence are still reverberating. If you haven't read it, do so here. It caused quite a stir and many of the bloggers I favor were on it quickly (Totten, Simon, Geras, Yourish....).
"I think Norm Geras put it correctly..."Shouldn't recent European history, to say nothing of much other history, cause everybody to have these second thoughts?" Why is a group singled out to be sensitive, as if a wrong is made more wrong by who committed it. Would it be any better to say that since the Holocaust was committed by non-jews (Catholics and Protestants), then all Christians should be more sensitive to promoting Hollywood violence. I mean some committed it so they all should be sensitive to anything that promotes violence. That is ridiculous. As human beings and what has transpired throughout the past century, we all should be sensitive. Bottom line, fucking leave the Jews alone...why are they being singled out? What does it matter what their background is? If Eisner and Weinstein were not jewish, would it be more understandable to Easterbrook that they distributed the movie? Someone in the comments section said that history dictates that jews should be more sensitive. All jews? Everyone of them? So two people distrbute a movie and their religion becomes an issue. For all we know, they weren't even raised jewish. Irrelevant... as jews, they should be castigated. Had they not been jewish, no big deal. Or at least their religion would not have been an issue or a point to discuss.That caused a response from Tom Perry that left me bewildered (I don't think I can link to it, so you will have to go to it if you care; it wasn't his best stuff to say the least.... he was all over this issue and said some outrageous things, but is a bit better and arguably thoughtful now at his site (isntapundit)). Having said all that, I have softened a bit ... at least as it relates to Easterbrook. In part that is due to the defense offered by Andrew Sullivan (he has been terrific on the issue of anti-semitism) and Wieseltier, as well as the conversations Easterbrook had with Simon and Yourish. But what really did it for me today was Taranto. I think he nailed it:
What anti-semtisim is about is just that. Beyond all the stereotypes (money-loving, yada yada yada) and other crap, it is the treatment of jews as something different for no other reason than that they are jewish. They are apart from all others and deserve (or should I say "history mandates"; why not start with Judas for that matter) unique inspection. They can't do things without their jewishness becoming a weighing factor in the analysis.
Sorry, but religion and collective history can't be binding or relevant to only one party.
"Well, allow us to explain. Easterbrook's essay was an expression not of anti-Semitism but of a lesser, though still insidious, form of prejudice. Call it liberal condescension. This sentence from his apology reveals all: "How, I wondered, could anyone Jewish--members of a group who suffered the worst act of violence in all history, and who suffer today, in Israel, intolerable violence--seek profit from a movie that glamorizes violence as cool fun?"I don't think Easterbrook is anti-semitic. I have read him for years and always found him interesting. But I do think he is prejudiced...in the way many of the Left think about groups....it is usually a device used to bolster up disenfranchised group of peoples, which I understand, but it has unfortunate ramifications. It is not an explicitly rascist or prejudiced way of looking at society, but structurally, it can't help but be. The subservience of individual recognition in favor of group affiliation is a form of prejudice. And I think it is that orientation that Easterbrook suffered from. Anyway. perhaps I will expound on this sometime, but I thought Best of the Web was again the best today.
"Members of a group": This is the language of liberal identity politics. And note that this is a philo-Semitic prejudice, not an anti-Semitic one. Easterbrook's premise is that the suffering of the Jewish people ennobles Jewish individuals--or should--even if those individuals have not themselves suffered. Thus he presumes to hold Jews to a higher moral standard by virtue of their Jewishness--though in fact all he's doing is asking them to agree with his highly debatable opinion (does it really make any sense to liken stylized Hollywood violence to the Holocaust?).
Ideologically, Easterbrook's earnest criticism of Jewish studio executives is of a piece with Maureen Dowd's racist rant against Clarence Thomas. Because Thomas is black, Dowd, like other liberals, expects him to conform to liberal orthodoxy and thus treats his conservatism as a far greater offense than that of, say, Antonin Scalia. This kind of prejudice may not lead to pogroms and lynchings, but it's divisive and often ugly all the same.
Nothing exciting, no political statements. Just James Lileks writing a sweet column about going to the circus with his daughter.
David Frum writes in OpinionJournal today about why gay marriage is "bad."
As always seems to be the way, we've come to understand the importance of marriage at exactly the moment that the institution is approaching the verge of collapse. A generation of social scientists has documented the benefits to children of growing up in a father-mother household; yet today, an American child has less than a one-in-two chance of reaching the age of 18 in the same home as both of his or her parents. That fact should concern us all.
And any changes in family policy ought to be directed at one supreme goal: improving children's odds of growing up in a stable home.
Allowing same-sex marriage would reduce those odds. That's not an assertion; it's an empirical observation. In the past decade, same-sex marriage or something like it has entered the law of eight countries: Denmark, France, Hungary, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and, most recently, Canada. Each has its own distinctive approach to the matter. But in all of them, the push for same-sex marriage has had the same result. Rather than get into a fight with religious organizations for whom the term "marriage" refers to one of their own sacraments, governments try to mollify everybody by creating a new legal category very similar to marriage, but not exactly the same. France, for example, has enacted into law something called a Pacte Civile de SolidaritÃ©, a registered partnership that grants any two people who live together a bevy of rights while holding each responsible for the other's rights and obligations.
Compared to marriage, a civil pact is harder to get into (some of its benefits do not arrive until a couple has been together for two or even three years) and much easier to get out of. That is very appealing to couples nervous of marriage--and these days, who isn't nervous? It's been estimated that some 40% of the couples entering "civil pacts" are heterosexual.
Something similar is going on in Canada, only there the categories are even blurrier. A couple that simply lives together for two years automatically and without any formal act acquires many of the rights of a formally married couple. The exit from a relationship is just as blurry as the entry: In one famous case, a Canadian court ordered a man who had divorced his wife before he became wealthy to pay her an increased settlement based on the income he had begun to earn after the marriage ended.
Now think about what this means. Marriage used to have a bright clear line: you were married or you were not. It was a serious commitment--and most people understood that if they weren't ready for this commitment, they ought to postpone having children until they were.
I wrote the following e-mail to Mr. Woolsey. I think that the article should be spread from the rooftops and screamed on street corners. Woolsey is a good and true man. It should be noted that, as Director of Central Intelligence under Clinton, he saw the President... twice. So much for Clinton's intelligence (both meanings absolutely intended).
If you ever needed proof of the existence of G-d, check out this story:
A convicted child molester was beaten unconscious by one of his past victims while they shared a jail holding cell, authorities said.
The former victim, a 22-year-old man being held on a probation violation, recognized Kevin Kinder as the man who abused him and three other boys when he was 11.
He jumped on Kinder, punched him repeatedly and knocked him unconscious Thursday, said the man's lawyer, Ricky Escobar.
It's such a fluke that these two ended up in the same place at the same time," said the former victim's mother, Judy Coronett. "But think about how (my son) feels. He was finally able to confront Kinder and fight back after 11 years. I think it's damn therapeutic."
Bill Bennett, Jack Kemp & Jeane Kirkpatrick note 20 facts about Israel and the Middle East.
The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) was founded in 1964—three years before Israel controlled the West Bank and Gaza. The PLO’s declared purpose was to eliminate the State of Israel by means of armed struggle. To this day, the Web site of Yasir Arafat’s Palestinian Authority (PA) claims that the entirety of Israel is "occupied" territory. It is impossible to square this with the PLO and PA assertions to Western audiences that the root of the conflict is Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza.
The West Bank and Gaza (controlled by Jordan and Egypt from 1948 to 1967) came under Israeli control during the Six Day War of 1967 that started when Egypt closed the Straits of Tiran and Arab armies amassed on Israel’s borders to invade and liquidate the state. It is important to note that during their 19-year rule, neither Jordan nor Egypt had made any effort to establish a Palestinian state on those lands. Just before the Arab nations launched their war of aggression against the State of Israel in 1967, Syrian Defense Minister (later President) Hafez Assad stated, "Our forces are now entirely ready . . . to initiate the act of liberation itself, and to explode the Zionist presence in the Arab homeland . . . the time has come to enter into a battle of annihilation." On the brink of the 1967 war, Egyptian President Gamal Nassar declared, "Our basic objective will be the destruction of Israel."
. . . .
Israel is smaller than the state of New Hampshire and is surrounded by nations hostile to her existence. Some peace proposals—including the recent Saudi proposal—demand withdrawal from the entire West Bank, which would leave Israel 9 miles wide at its most vulnerable point.
Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey writes a column that will be beloved by both Jews and Anti-Semites.
I have decided that the most beautiful words in the English language are not "I love you," or "Congratulations, you're a father!"
Lileks fisks an op-ed by Colleen Rowley.
"Hey, in my herb-addled brain, the "60's", a tumultuous period during which the US was plagued by domestic terrorist groups like the Weathermen and the SLA, was involved in an unpopular foreign war and endured riots at the Democratic Convention, is actually a fantastic time to be emulated 35 years later! But where can I buy Hippie Crap? At HippieCrap.com, of course!"
Alan Dershowitz makes an interesting case against Jordan. The entire article is good, but I thought this was the point that would be most surprising for the majority of people:
Jordan killed more Palestinians in one month -- September 1970, known as Black September -- than Israel has killed during the three years of suicide bombings that began in the fall of 2000. The brutality of the Jordanian Army toward Palestinian dissidents and terrorists was far more egregious than anything Israel has ever done.
Well, even tax lawyers can be funny. This is the bio of Martin Ginsburg, who is of counsel in the Washington office of the law firm I work for, Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson.
On a related note, Ross and another guy, Matt Cohen, also came up with something the Trekkies/Trekkers among you will appreciate:Captains Picard and Stubing; compare and contrast...
I missed posting this before Yom Kippur, but back in '92, a friend of mine, Ross Garmil, co-wrote something in the Brandeis University comedy magazine, Gravity, that has made the Internet rounds. I post the link (a) Because it's funny; and (b) because Noel Rappin and Ross Garmil deserve the credit. So, here's the link to Yom Kippur Vs. The Super Bowl.
Hmmm. 2 Republicans split more than 60% of an election in California.
According to Jeff Jarvis, Michael Moore stated on the Today Show that:
"There is no terrorist threat."
Lester Holt, shocked, says is there not evidence of a terrorist threat just two miles away?
Moore says, "How many people died because of terrorism last year? None." He calls the bombings of the World Trade Center "occasional, horrible incidents."
Instapundit posted a wonderful open letter to Paul Krugman from Arnold King, a fellow MIT graduate of Krugman's. King talks about the differences between thoughtful ways of having a debate on issues... one that focuses on the potential consequences or results of a particular policy, and debate-ending methods...ones that focus on the motives of the party advocating a particular policy. Smart stuff... and nails the issue I think and what tends to be so frustrating about political discussion these days. It is impossible to have a real conversation on Iraq or school vouchers or taxation or anything without it becoming a conversation-ending accusation of imperialism, racism or class warfare. That is horrible. Krugman is the king of the motives style of debating. It is all about accusations against Bush and his motives. No real thoughtful conversation about the merits. And it really epitomizes the positions articulated by the angry left these days. And it is nothing new. The right has done it too, when it lost its mind and was out of power. But it seems to be getting worse.
Well, apparently the people at "moveon.org," (a group I became familiar with thanks to a member of an email list I'm on who thought they were just the greatest thing in the world, until she heard of Dr. Dean and started gushing incessantly about him) became very upset with the New York Post because they didn't agree to fire Bob Novak. I don't really understand why they would want Novak fired; he was the columnist who started the whole kerfuffle about the "burnt CIA agent" that threatens to reignite the independent counsel, and he was against the war in Iraq, so you'd think moveon.org would love him.
You can send pizza and Pepsi to U.S. Soldiers serving in the Gulf and the MidEast or send pizza, burgers and ice cream to an Israeli Defence Forces soldier.
The world's most honored terrorist is evidently ill.
What a fantastic idea. I heartily encourage its adoption in this country.
Wow. That's pretty much all I can say, other than "Why is anyone eating at