Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Odds and ends...

Odds and ends:
  • From the "you just can't make that up" file: "An expedition team which set sail from Plymouth on a 5,000-mile carbon emission-free trip to Greenland have been rescued by an oil tanker."

  • Andy McCarthy outlines an almost - almost - unbelievable example of hypocrisy from the Obama administration.
    [The Obama Justice Department's] Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) is nearing completion of a 220-page report which will recommend that Attorney General Eric Holder refer former Bush administration lawyers to their state bar disciplinary committees over purported ethical lapses in the legal analysis those lawyers drafted to justify harsh interrogation techniques that critics — including President Obama himself — have labeled “torture.”...Yet, even as the OPR report is being finalized, even after Obama declared himself open to the possibility of criminal prosecution against the Bush officials...the Obama Justice Department is relying on the very same legal analysis in order to urge a federal appeals court to reject torture claims. In fact, as the Obama Justice Department argued to that appeals court a little over a week ago, the torture law analysis in question has already been adopted by another federal appeals court.

  • Yes, I know that liberals can't be hypocrites. There are two reasons. The first is, when you don't have any fixed principles, you cannot be accused of violating them. Secondly, they cannot be criticized because of the moral superiority demonstrated by their stated goals, whether the goals are good or not, whether the means chosen will promote those goals or not.

  • There are a few conservatives in Hollywood. Some of them post at Big Hollywood. And say interesting or provocative things. I think that this bit from Orson Bean does a nice job pointing out perspective that some on the left miss.
    The Los Angeles Times tries hard to present different viewpoints on its Op-Ed page. But last week, they hit a new low with a column by a lawyer named Joseph Margulies, pleading for mercy on behalf of one of the three terrorists America has water-boarded since 9/11: Abu Zubaydah..."The enduring torment is the taunting reminder that darkness encroaches. Already he cannot picture his mother’s face or recall his father’s name. Gradually his past, like his future, eludes him.”


    When I had calmed down a bit after reading this, I typed out a letter to The Times which they printed. Here’s what the letter said:

    “She looks into his eyes. Hers are filled with terror. The heat is unbearable. Her skin is beginning to blister. He reaches out and takes her hand. His hand has a deep gash in it from the shattered glass of the window he has helped to smash. ‘Hold on tight to me,’ he whispers. ‘Keep your eyes closed. Don’t look down.’ Together, they step through the jagged opening of a high floor of the World Trade Center. On the sidewalk below, people shriek in horror.

    I don’t know the young woman’s name, but I do know that, like Abu Zabadah, she can’t picture her mother’s face either.”

  • While it's getting some traction, I'm not sure that there's been adequate coverage of what's happening with Chrysler. I don't detect any of the outrage that people should be feeling as the Obama adminstration violates pretty much every principle of fairness and law. Michael Barone addressed a lot of it in a good piece.
    ...the Obama deal ... would give the bondholders about 33 cents on the dollar for their secured debts while giving the United Auto Workers retirees about 50 cents on the dollar for their unsecured debts.

    This of course is a violation of one of the basic principles of bankruptcy law, which is that secured creditors — those who lended money only on the contractual promise that if the debt was unpaid they’d get specific property back — get paid off in full before unsecured creditors get anything.


    Think carefully about what’s happening here. The White House, presumably car czar Steven Rattner and deputy Ron Bloom, is seeking to transfer the property of one group of people to another group that is politically favored. In the process, it is setting aside basic property rights in favor of rewarding the United Auto Workers for the support the union has given the Democratic Party.

    Read the whole thing.

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