Friday, February 28, 2014

M Bergevin, les amateurs du CH vous prient!

Cher Marc Bergevin... Poor Len Canayen tried to tell you in January. Walt tried to tell you before the Olympics and again after the Olympics. Today, fans of your Montréal Canadiens (like the one pictured) are begging you: trade P.K. Subban!

Cher Marc, you've got to stop listening to those guys who defend Subban because he's enthusiastic and flashy and an inspiration to... well, you know what I mean. He may be all of those things, but he's a liability to the team! That's why, even though he was chosen for Team Canada in a fit of political correctness, Mike Babcock refused to play him, except for a token 11 minutes in Canada's least challenging game.

In an exchange of e-mails with Agent 3, the Montreal Gazette's respected Red Fisher pointed out that Subban's +/- (plus/minus) stats are positive, which is true. But the +/- number is skewed by the fact that Subban plays on the power play (about 75% of the time) and does not play on the penalty kill. Why? Because Michel Therrien has little confidence in his ability to play defence when it counts! See "P.K. can't be trusted on the P.K.!".

Here's what Walt, Len and Habs fans (like the one pictured) saw last night and the night before.

Wednesday night: Detroit 2 @ Canadiens 1Cher Marc, your team stank. There's plenty of blame to go around, but Subban should take more than his share. Of 3 Habs penalties, P.K. took 2, neither of them "good penalties". Detroit scored its only goal in regulation time while he was in the box. He was on the ice when Montréal scored its only goal, with less than a minute to go in the third period.

But he went into the box again in the overtime period, for a cheap retaliation shot, nullifying what should have been a Montréal power play. He returned to the ice in time for Detroit's winning goal. His +/- was therefore 0, but if you had to pick one player whose work hurt more than it helped, P.K. would be that player.

Thursday night: Canadiens 6 @ Pittsburgh 5
A very lucky win for the Habs in a shoot-out after a crazy game! (And congratulations to Petr Budaj for stopping Neal, Crosby and Malkin!) Subban was on the ice with poor Josh Gorges for the first two Penguins goals. So far away from the play was he on the second goal that Rene Bourque wound up playing P.K.'s position.

The really egregious mistake, though, was a horrible example of Subban's showboat style, an astounding turnover at the Pittsburgh blueline on the power play, no less, which gave Sutter a clear break on which he scored to give the Penguins a 4-3 lead. The expression on Therrien's face was indescribable -- so horrific and fierce that the TV camera cut away. Except for the rest of the power play, Subban rode the pine for the rest of the game, and rightly so.

Cher Marc, Red Fisher says 29 other NHL teams would be glad to have P.K. Subban. Walt doubts it, but in the name of all Habs fans asks you to make a few phone calls, for the good of the team! Please! We beg you!

Note from Len: Marc, call Vancouver! Maybe you could get Alex Burrows and a draft pick (or two). We need some grit and scoring punch up front, and the Canucks need some D, so there's your deal!

Dambisa Moyo advocates end to foreign aid, makes Bill Gates angry

On Tuesday Walt reviewed Dead Aid, by Dr. Dambisa Moyo, an African economist. As noted, her book is a well-written, compelling argument for an end to foreign aid, which she says is a waste of money and actually works against the goals of development and poverty reduction. Here's a four-paragraph summary, taken from the final chapter.

What if, one by one, African countries each received a phone call...telling them that in exactly five years the aid taps would be shut off -- permanently?

What do you think Africans would do if aid were stopped, simply carry on as usual? Too many African countries have already hit rock bottom -- ungoverned, poverty-stricken, and lagging further and further behind the rest of the world each day; there is nowhere further down to go.

Isn't it more likely that in a world freed of aid, economic life for the majority of Africans might actualy improve, that corruption would fall, entrepreneurs would rise, and Africa's growth engine would start chugging? This is the most probably outcome -- that whewre the real chance exists to make a better life for themselves, their children and Africa's future generations, Africans would grab it and go.

Aid came from the West (and continues to do so), and it's up to the West to take it back. Why have people in the West not demanded that something be done? It is, after all, their money being poured down the drain.

Predictably, writing such politically incorrect heresy brought Dr. Moyo a lot of flak from "progressive thinkers" and aid advocates such as Jeffrey Sachs and Bill Gates. [Not to mention Al Gore and Jimmy Carter? Ed.] It will be noted that all of those named are rich American white guys -- the sort of Western liberals whose feelings of guilt are assuaged by persuading governments to throw their money -- and ours! -- down the toilets of the Third World.

Dambisa Moyo, on the other hand, is an African woman. (See picture.) Click here to read "Dambisa Moyo counter-attacks Bill Gates’ critique of her work as ‘evil’". Then read Dead Aid and figure out for yourself whose approach to helping Africa makes more sense.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Muslims aren't targetting Libyan Christians, sez Vatican; they are so! sez Bishop of Tripoli

For the last week, the Vatican has been hosting one of its periodic talk-fests known as a Synod of Bishops. Roman Catholic bishops from around the world gather for a bit of lightweight theological sparring and lots of hand-wringing over the sorry state of the world and of the Church.

On February 21st, the Holy See Press Office released a statement which began:
"The Holy Father and the Cardinals have elevated to the Lord a special prayer for the many Christians who, in different parts of the world, are increasingly the victims of acts of intolerance or persecution...because of the Gospel."

The statement goes on to say:
"Unfortunately, we have noticed that many of the current conflicts are described as religious in nature, often surreptitiously pitting Christians and Muslims, while the roots of the conflicts are primarily ethnic, political or economic."
In other words, the Church is once again being politically correct by telling us that the killing of Christians by Islamic extremists has nothing to do with religion, and is definitely not some kind of jihad. Perish the thought!

Unfortunately for the relativists who infest the higher echelons of Holy Mother Church, just four days later, a bishop from Libya said exactly the opposite!

On the 25th, Monsignor Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, the Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli, told FIDES that the Libya extremists who have become stronger in the wake of the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi are targeting Christians.
"It is not clear what these extremists really want," said the prelate. "They would appear to be shedding the blood of innocent victims to get more visibility. Orthodox Coptic Christians have been their target for some time."
Bishop Martinelli specifically excluded any political or economic motives for the massacre.

Bishop Martinelli made his comments in the wake of the abduction and massacre of seven Egyptian Christians who were living in Libya. This happened on February 23rd in Benghazi, which will be remembered for the attack on the US consulate, which President B. Hussein Obama had nothing to do with Muslim terrorism.

The seven Copts were taken from their homes by armed men. Their bodies were found the next day on the outskirts of the city, riddled with gunshots to the chest and head. The Apostolic Vicar of Benghazi recovered the bodies of the victims and handed them over to the Coptic community.

Globally, the January report of the Pew Research Religion & Life Project on the presence of religious conflicts in various countries, showed a net increase in conflict, which was reported in 33% of countries surveyed in 2012, compared with 29% in 2011 and 20% in 2007. This, of course, has escaped the notice of those in the Vatican who believe that all religions are equally valid, all searching for the same Universal Truth.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

$1,000,000,000,000 down the African drain

In case you missed it [As if you could, with all the negative stories in the lamestream media! Ed.], Ugandan President Yoweveri Museveni yesterday signed into law a statute criminalizing homosexual behaviour in his small African country. Click here to see a short report and video clip from BBC News. Fudge-packing and other gay things can now get you up to life in a Ugandan jail -- not a pleasant prospect.

What does this have to do with the headline above? Well... in response to the Ugandans' refusal to bend over for political correctness and the LGBT agenda, Prez B. Hussein Obama (who does a lot of bending in that direction) announced that the Excited States of America would "review" its programme of foreign aid to Uganda.

So what?! Well... in Walt's humble opinion [!!! Ed.], cutting off aid to Uganda and the rest of Africa would be doing the Dark Continent a huge favour! Before you accuse me of being callous, uncaring and racist, let me point out that the same opinion has been voiced -- very eloquently too -- by William Easterly in The White Man's Burden (Penguin, 2007) and Dambisa Moyo in Dead Aid (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2009). Walt recommends both books highly.

Both Dr. Easterly and Dr. Moyo are economists. Both have worked for the World Bank, one of the chief dispensers of "development aid", which is one of the three types of foreign aid extended by the West to the Rest (as Dr. Easterly puts it). In the last half-century, over a trillion US dollars in aid has been doled out to Africa. That's US$1,000,000,000,000 -- a thousand billion or a million million bucks, dear taxpayers, of your money and mine.

What do we have to show for it? Are the countries of Africa better off today than they were in the bad old colonial days, 50+ years ago? Errr, no. So say both of the esteemed doctors. Dr. Moyo tells us that her best friend, a Zambian who was educated and working in America, returned home to find "that her country continues to flounder in a seemingly never-ending cycle of corruption, disease, poverty and aid-dependency."

Why so? Dr. Moyo explains. "Aid has failed to deliver the promise of...poverty reduction.... [Instead] it perpetuates the cycle of poverty and derails sustainable economic growth."

Dr. Easterly takes up the same theme at considerably greater length. The White Man's Burden is replete with the charts, graphs and tables so beloved of economists, which suffer from being over-simplified to print in black and white, but the statistics are there. And both authors reach the same conclusion, that all this well-intentioned "aid" has been largely wasted.

Dead Aid suggests five possible reasons for the discrepancy between the promise and the result. One possibility -- and it's significant that Dr. Moyo says this -- is "the largely unspoken and insidious view that the problem with Africa is Africans -- that culturally, mentally and physically, Africans are innately different. That, somehow, deeply embedded in their psyche is an inability to embrace development and improve their own lot in life without foreign guidance and help."

Dr. Easterly wouldn't touch that one, and neither will Walt.

Part of the "problem with Africans" -- that's me speaking, now -- is the corruption which is endemic to every single African country with the possible exception of Botswana. Dr. Moyo returns us to our point of beginning. "In Uganda, for example, aid-fuelled corruption in the 1990s was thought to be so rampant that only 20 cents of every US dollar of government spending on education reached the targeted local primary school."

Quoting now from Niall Ferguson's foreword to Dead Aid, "Despite the widespread Western belief that 'the rich should help the poor, and the form of this help should be aid', the reality is that aid has helped make the poor poorer, and growth slower. In Moyo's startling words: 'Aid has been, and continues to be, an unmitigated political, economic and humanitarian disaster..."

Both Dr. Moyo and Dr. Easterly offer alternative sources of funding for the economic and humanitarian help Africa so badly needs. Dr. Easterly's remedy requires the people he describes as "Searchers" -- those in need of help and those looking for a practical way to help -- to find their own solutions, rather than holding out the begging bowl yet another time.

Walt suggests this paraphrase of a much-used cliché: don't give them a fishing rod; make them go and find one! And before you can do that, you have to stop giving them fish!

Further reading on WWW: "Jeffrey Sachs and the great Ugandan donkey fiasco".

VIDEO: Nissan's excellent "Evil Snowmen" commercial

Walt is pleased to present the WWW Excellence in Advertising Award to the agency which created "Winter Warriors" -- that's the official title but I like "Evil Snowmen" better -- for Nissan Canada. Here's a minute of winter horror!

Although there's an English-language version, as far as I know this spot is airing only in Canada, not in the USA. Seems kind of short-sighted considering the kind of winter weather in which most of the country has been gripped since shortly after Labour Day!

Yes, I know that many of our dear readers -- especially the Canucks -- have already seen this. It's had close to 3 million hits on YouTube already! But did you know there are three spin-offs which are kind of cute, called "Interview with a Snowman": Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

Terrific commercial, guys. Hope it sells some cars for you!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Random thoughts about the Winter Olympics

Impressions gained while watching the Winter Olympics on the boob tube over the last two weeks...

Good show! The opening and closing ceremonies are supposed to be about spectacle, and I'd say the Russians delivered spectacle in spades. The closing ceremonies were a little subdued compared with the opening, but that's to be expected... kind of a post-coitus let-down, I suppose. And yes, there was a glitch in the special effects at the opening. When did such a big show ever come off without one? Congratulations to the Russians.

Speaking of which, it looked to me as if all those dire predictions about facilities and infrastructure being unready or inadequate were much ado about nothing. So the hotels weren't ***** (5-star), the ice was a bit snowy and one American locked himself in his bathroom. Everything... everything... was up and running on the day, and it was all right. America isn't the only country with the technical knowhow to get things done.

What did you think of all the "new" sports? "Half-pipe"...isn't that what used to be called "hotdogging"? And the moguls and the "cross" [??? Ed.], all new to me. [Where have you been? Ed.] They were all great to watch, but I'm not in favour of adding too many judged competitions, for the simple reason that the judges' decisions are always open to question and criticism, as in the case of the ice dancing. It's hard to fix a timed race, but where points are given for "style" or "technical difficulty", it's all subjective, right?

Some sports weren't so exciting. Speed skating bores the hell out of me. [Agent 9 would say that's a good thing. Ed.] Even if someone falls, they don't exactly crash and burn. All they do is slide into the boards and get a nasty bruise. What fun is that? I think the only reason there are so many speed skating events still on the cards is so the Dutch will have something they can win. Well c'mon, they don't do anything else!

Then there's curling. OK, I see the skill involved in "the roaring game", but still, the rock is moving down the ice so slowly that two people wearing toe rubbers can actually stay ahead of it while sliding sideways. Looks to me like the Canadian equivalent of lawn bowling, which I guess is about all you can do when your country is covered in ice 363 days per year. Congratulations anyway to the Canadians who won both the men's and women's competitions.

Which reminds me... There was a time when curling was played -- at championship level, mind you -- by old guys like Hector Gervais who couldn't even see his toes, and managed to smoke and drink while playing. Times have changed. Did you see the biceps on those Canadian guys? Seriously fit lads! And the Canadian women...seriously hot!

Figure skating... I like watching figure skating, and I'm not gay! Can't say the same about some of the skaters, but that's their business, and you'll notice no-one tried to keep them from competing in spite of all the LGBT propaganda about the Russians being homophobic and hateful. I repeat my comment about judged events but acknowledge that just because your favourite didn't win gold doesn't necessarily mean the result was rigged.

Maybe there shouldn't even be medals, but how can you have a competition with no rankings or prizes? On that point, could the IOC please rationalize the methods of tallying up the medal count? It would seem the top four countries were Russia, the USA, Norway and Canada, but in what order? Do you count the total number of medals, or the number of golds (then silver, then bronze to break ties), or do you assign a certain number of points for the gold, silver and bronze? Which method you use seems to depend on who you want to win -- just like real life.

I think we must be up to at least 1000 words now, so will close with just one picture, for which thanks to Agent 9.

Best Team Canada ever!

Walt has been absent for the last few days, having been in Sochi -- in spirit if not in the putrifying flesh. I'll post some thoughts on the Winter Olympiad later today, but first CONGRATULATIONS to the best men's hockey team ever to play in the modern games!

That would be Team Canada, seen above posing with the gold medals they won by beating Team Sweden 3-0 in a game which was well worth getting up in the wee hours to watch on the idiot's lantern. The result was expected, though. The real championship game was on Friday, when the NHL all-stars who are American citizens succumbed to the Canucks 1-0 in a thoroughly thrilling nail-biter.

The Team Canada selectors were faced this year with un embarras de richesse -- a surfeit of talent -- so much so that they could easily have picked two teams which would have been serious contenders for a medal -- the hockey equivalent of an entry in the sport of kings. Walt has comments on just three of the players chosen to wear the red and white.

Sidney Crosby -- Captain and superstar! In the five games played by Team Canada before yesterday's final, Sid the Kid managed only two assists. Typically, Canuck sports hacks started carping about Sid never being the same since his concussion, having lost his touch, being hard to play with, yada yada yada. Yesterday his insurance goal for Canada showed him at his magnificent best. It was picture perfect, and the video clip will be watched again and again, as was his winning goal four years ago, and as will be another in four years time.

P.K. Subban -- Selected for reasons of political correctness -- Canadian media are big on "celebrating diversity -- Pernell Karl was not trusted by super-savvy coach Mike Babcock to refrain from showboating. Result, he played just 11 minutes in the second preliminary game against Austria. He did no harm. See "P.K. can't be trusted on the P.K.!" and "It's time to trade Subban!"

Carey Price -- Do you believe now? When the Montréal Canadiens starting goalie was chosen along with Vancouver's Roberto Luongo, there were plenty of "experts" (Hello Donless Cherry!) who said Babcock with have to go with Luongo because Price was just a kid, never played in the Olympics before, more yada yada yada. Walt, on the other hand, thought that Price is the best Canadian goalie in the business. So who was EH?

I take nothing away from Luongo, who shut out the Austrians in his only game. But Carey played all the other games, all five, and allowed just three (count `em! 3!) goals. That's an average of 0.60 goals per game. No wonder he has such a big smile as he stacks the pads in the foreground of the picture. Way to go, Carey!

Now Walt must go and nurse his hangover. Back later...

Thursday, February 20, 2014

VIDEO: Porky Pig utters un-PC word in old cartoon

Walt is old enough to remember when "swear words" were never uttered on the silver screen. When Clark Gable said "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn!" near the end of Gone With The Wind, that was a really big deal...and I mean huge!

How, then,did this one, from the mischievous Warner Brothers cartoon factory, get by the censors?
WARNING: LANGUAGE - not suitable for viewers under 14 (meaning we know you'll want to check this out)

Since "sonovabitch" doesn't have a whole lot of shock value these days, you will be wondering about the point of this post. Here it comes.

Agent 9 introduced us to a great website called Video Jukebox. The creators have compiled a looooong list of links [nice alliteration! Ed.] of musical hits from (mostly) 1955 to 1964 -- the Golden Age of Rock'n'Roll. It's the kind of old-time rock'n'roll heard throughout American Graffiti, which I think of as the music of my life. Here's a sample -- one of my favourites!

All the links connect with YouTube, which means that it's free to listen (and rip). The compilers have done fans a huge service by getting everything in one place. There's a "donate" button at the top, so you might send along a couple of bucks. Enjoy!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

UKRAINE FOR UKRAINIANS - Walt chooses his side

Agent 1, who is of Ukrainian descent, used to complain about being called "Asian" of "Eurasian". "We are Europeans!", she said. Even worse, during the Soviet Days, was to be called a Russian! "We are not Russians!" she said. "We have our own flag, our own language. And the Russians have taken our land!"

That, in a nutshell, is what the violent demonstrations raging in Kyiv -- the capital of the Ukraine -- are all about. The Ukraine is a country divided geographically, and by language and religion. The conflict -- which could escalate into a civil war -- is about much more than whether the country should face the future as part of the European Union or as a satellite of Russia. It is about whether the Ukraine can hold onto its fragile independence.

The division between the western and eastern parts of the Ukraine runs more or less along the Dniepr River, which runs right through Kyiv. The economy of the eastern Ukraine is dominated by mining and industry; that of the west is chiefly agricultural.

The eastern Ukraine was thoroughly and deliberately "Russified" during the Soviet era. The use of the Ukrainian language was discouraged, even prohibited; people were ordered to speak Russian. Similarly, the Ukrainian Catholic Church (aka Byzantine Rite or Greek Catholic) was dispossessed and the so-called Ukrainian Orthodox Church was the only Christian church tolerated by the atheistic Communists.

For most of the 20th century, the Ukrainian people -- particularly those of the west -- were ruled by people who were similar to them (Slavs) but still "foreigners". First the Poles, then the Russians. And they objected, as forcefully as they could, to the tyranny of "the other".

When the Germans invaded the Soviet Union in 1941, Ukrainian nationalists saw their chance to resurrect the short-lived Ukrainian republic, which had flourished for a few months in the aftermath of World War I. A volunteer army was formed, to fight on the side of the Nazis against their Soviet (read "Russian") overlords.

Inevitably, the nationalists became disillusioned and formed the УПА -- Українська Повстанська Армія (in English "Ukrainian Insurgent Army") -- which waged military campaigns against both Nazi German and Soviet forces. Theirs is the red and black flag you see here...and waving in the streets of Kyiv today.

The УПА was the military wing of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists — Bandera faction (OUN-B), originally formed in Volyn (in the northwestern part of the country) in 1943. Its official date of creation is 14 October 1942, the Feast of the Intercession of the Theotokos. The goal of the OUN was the re-establishment of a united, independent national state on Ukrainian ethnic territory -- "the rebirth, of setting everything in order, the defence and the expansion of the Independent Council of the Ukrainian National State".

OUN also revived the sentiment that "Ukraine is for Ukrainians". With the downfall of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s and the rebirth of the Ukrainian republic, it was thought -- perhaps "hoped" is the better word -- that goal had at last been achieved.

A quarter of a century later, the Ukrainians find themselves ruled once again by corrupt, repressive, Russian-speakers whose aim seems to be to bring Ukraine back to the bosom of "Mother Russia". And that, dear readers, is why true Ukrainians are in the streets of Kyiv today. May God bless them and Our Lady protect them! Ukraine for the Ukrainians!

Monday, February 17, 2014

What to expect when the Muslims take over your country

Quick, now, what's the largest Muslim country in the world? Noooo... not France, not Algeria, not even Pakistan. The right answer is Indonesia! [I knew that. Ed.] The southest Asian country sprawls over a huge archipelago -- two time zones wide -- and has a population of 251,000,000. 2% of Indonesians are Hindus. 3% are Catholic. 6% are other Christians. And 86% -- eighty-six percent -- are Muslims.

In the western Indonesian province of Aceh, the percentage who are followers of the Prophet rises to 98%! That number may rise due to an exodus of "infidels" expected in the wake of last week's announcement that the provincial government will extend the enforcement of Sharia law to non-Muslims. Click here to read the report in the Jakarta Post.

Violations of Sharia include drinking liquor, khalwat (affectionate contact between an unmarried couple), and (for women) wearing tight pants or not wearing the hijab. Anyone found drinking alcohol or breaching the codes on moral behavior, whether residents or visitors to Aceh, could face between six and nine lashes of the cane.

Police have been stopping women -- Muslim or non-Muslim -- seen not wearing the correct headgear. The Fides news service reports the 62 people have been detained in Aceh in recent days for "inappropriate clothing." Christian leaders in the Indonesian province have decried the new directives as "harmful for human rights and religious freedom."

Moral of the story: Don't even think of going to Aceh!

WARNING! Do you think your country is safe because Muslims are not in the majority...yet? Just wait! In the name of political correctness, almost every Western government is encouraging immigration from Muslim countries, or at least accepting 1000s of "refugees" every month from the war-torn sandpits of Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, and so forth -- Muslim countries all.

To make matters worse, while we "Christians" ignore the Church's prohibitions on artificial birth control and abortion, the Muslims are breeding like rabbits! Even if our borders were closed tomorrow [fat chance! Ed.], Muslims would become more numerous than non-Muslims later, rather than sooner. In the French-speaking countries of north Africa and the Middle East, it's called la revanche du berceau -- the revenge of the cradle... coming soon to your country!

Snake-handling Kentucky pastor killed by reptilian non-believer

RIP Jamie Coots, former pastor of the Full Gospel Tabernacle in Jesus Name Church in Middlesboro KY. Reverend Coots went to meet his Maker on Saturday, after handling -- and being bitten by -- a large rattlesnake.

Handling snakes is part of the deceased's version of the Christian religion. Followers of the evangelical Protestant sect take literally a passage from the Gospel of St. Mark (16:17-18):
And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name they shall cast out devils: they shall speak with new tongues. They shall take up serpents; and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them...

Errr, maybe not. Cody Winn, another preacher, told the local TV station that on Saturday night "Jamie went across the floor. He had one of the rattlers in his hand, he came over and he was standing beside me. It was plain view, it just turned its head and bit him in the back of the hand…within a second."

After he was bitten, Mr. Coots dropped the snakes, but then picked them back up and continued on for a few minutes, then went to the restoom. When an ambulance arrived at the church at 8:30 p.m., they were told the reverend had gone home. When contacted at his house he refused medical treatment. Said his son Cody, "He's going to hurt, he's going to pray for a while and he's going to get better. That's what happened every other time."

But not this time. Emergency workers left about 9:10 p.m. When they returned about an hour later, Mr. Coots was dead from the venomous snake bite.

A year ago, Rev. Coots was interviewed by AP, and told them, "We literally believe they want us to take up snakes. We've been serpent handling for the past 20 or 21 years."

Has anyone ever been bitten and died before? Errr, yes. In 1995, 28-year-old Melinda Brown, of Parrottsville TN, died in the same church after being bitten by a four-foot [that's length, not the number of feed. Ed.] timber rattlesnake.

At the time, the county attorney wanted to prosecute someone... anyone but Ms Brown presumably... under a 1942 Kentucky law that makes it illegal to handle or display snakes during religious services. But the county judge refused to sign the criminal complaint. "If the court thought that a trial would act to deter future snake handling in church, my decision would be different," Judge James Bowling Jr. wrote to the county attorney. "But you and I both know that this practice is not going to stop until either rattlesnakes or snake handlers become extinct."

If asked to bet on which is more likely to survive, Walt's money would be on the snakes.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Who will defend the Church? New York Catholic leaders fail to respond to Cuomo attack - Radio interview with John Vennari

A month ago, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo -- a pro-abortion, LGBT-loving, womaniser who dares to call himself a Catholic -- declared, in his "state of the state" address, that New York is not big enough for those who want to defend the sanctity of human life against his abortion-expansion plans. See "Pro-Life? Now Welcome in Andrew Cuomo's New York", by Kathryn Jean Lopez in the National Review Online.

That's what Mr. Cuomo said. Here's the exact quote, only slightly edited by Walt: "Who are [the Republican candidates running aginst the SAFE Act]? Are they extreme conservatives who are right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay? Is that who they are? Because if that’s who they are...they have no place in the state of New York."

"They" would presumably include all good Catholics who accept the teaching of the Church that abortion is murder -- a mortal sin that cries to Heaven for vengeance. Another such sin is sodomy. Source: "Crying to Heaven for Vengeance", by Dr. Jeff Mirus in Catholic Culture.

Yet, a month later, the response of the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church in New York has been virtually inaudible. Why? Where are the Bishop Hubbards, the Cardinal Dolans, and others who should be defending the Faith with all their might? John Vennari, editor of Catholic Family News, discussed this in the context of the diabolical disorientation following Vatican II in a recent interview on Voice of Catholic Radio. Here it is -- audio only, running time 47:19.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

High schoolers sexting nude pix... involving fruit!

CBCNews has an interesting report today from the eastern Ontario town of Napanee. Seems the Old Bill is thinking about charging some local high school students with, errr, something, after nude photos of teenage girls were allegedly swapped online. Our Canadian legal beagle (aka Agent 3) says the difficulty in knowing what charges to lay may stem from the sexting activity being (apparently) quite voluntary.

The Ontario Provincial Police have interviewed a number of students at Napanee District Secondary School, and the Limestone District School Board has suspended "about 15" boys and girls. Neither the coppers nor school officials would talk about the nature of the "inappropriate images", but the students were not shy about going public with what they saw.

Said one Grade 11 student, "There's some nudes being sent around between different ages and grades. It's pretty hard core. There's been some very inappropriate gestures, and some fruit used."

Students said the exchange of images has been going on for a long time. One kid told the CBC, "Everybody is doing it!"

Cue the inevitable expert on cyberbullying, one Rena Bivens, a sociologist at Ottawa's Carleton University. If teens won't stop sexting, she said, they should at least use precautions. Like what, Rena? Well, "you can cut your head out of the picture. That's one way to try to prevent your identity from being matched to that photo and being spread around."

Forces for Good in the community are rushing to help. The school notified parents in a recorded voicemail that it plans to discuss "cyber safety, and issues of respect and dignity".

And Krishna Burra, the school board's head of the "Safe and Caring Schools Program" said all students involved will need counselling. "Students who made bad choices on either side of this issue, they are going to need support and there's going to be the need for healing through all of this."

Walt is puzzling over how this "issue" can have two sides. What's the choice -- to sext or not to sext? How does a kid make a "bad choice on either side..." Strange...

As for the other buzzwords, let's see... "respect", "dignity", "safety", "counselling", "healing"... anything missing? Can't see anything about kids with raging hormones being allowed to be kids, but hey, this is the 21st century.

Note from Ed.: Surely you don't think we'd publish any of the pictures...especially the ones involving fruit! We don't want to get our dear readers into any trouble. In this era of political correctness, the Thought Police would probably jail you for even thinking about such things!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Agents, comments and contacts

Ed. here with answers to three FAQ's about WWW and how you can communicate with Walt, Poor Len...and me!

AGENTS: "Who are all these numbered Agents you keep referring to?"
Although several of them seem to have congregated in Florida to ride out the winter, Walt normally has agents -- some of them normal -- on four continents. They speak three languages -- four if you count "Merkan" as a separate language. They contribute comments, leads (usually in the form of URLs of interesting sites or stories) and FWDs they think Walt (and you) might like.

How do you become an agent? Walt doesn't have a formal application process. If you contact Walt regularly with items just mentioned, you'll eventually find yourself referred to when we use one of your items. We never disclose numbers or identities. Indeed, it's all I can do to remember them myself, without the aid of my little black book!

CONTACTS: Simple! Click here to send an e-mail.
Yes, there's a spam filter. And I do recognize the 419 and other scams even if they slip through the filter. So if you're a spammer or scammer, you won't get a response, let alone Dollar One. But if you have a pearl to cast, knock yourself out.

COMMENTS: People who want to comment on one of our posts sometimes send an e-mail. You don't have to do that.
The problem seems to be that you can't comment directly from the landing/home page of our blog. What you do is click on the headline of the post you're reading. It will then open in a separate window, and you'll see the comments box open at the bottom. Submit your comment, which I [Ed.] will publish... or not... depending! Hey, that's my job...

You're welcome. Let's hear from you.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The American liberal dream ... and the reality

Definitely worth at least 1000 words. Thanks and a tip of Walt's battered fedora to Agent 36.

Americans too sensitive about race (etc) sez Supreme Court justice

In her extended rant against reverse racism, Mugged -- reviewed here a few days ago -- Ann Coulter makes mention (several times) of US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Ms Coulter implies that Justice Thomas is a credit to his race. (He is black.) She didn't actually use that "racist" cliché, but does point out that the judge didn't get his position on the highest court in America because of some affirmative action programme.

Justice Thomas himself had something to say on Tuesday about America's preoccupation with race. He told a gathering of students at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida that Americans today are too sensitive about race. Justice Thomas, the second "person of colour" to serve on the Supreme Court bench, lamented what he considers a society that is more conscious of racial differences than it was when he grew up in segregated Georgia in the days before and during the civil rights era.

"My sadness is that we are probably today more race and difference-conscious than I was in the 1960s when I went to school. To my knowledge, I was the first black kid in Savannah, Georgia, to go to a white school. Rarely did the issue of race come up," said the judge. "Now, name a day it doesn’t come up. Differences in race, differences in sex, somebody doesn’t look at you right, somebody says something. Everybody is sensitive. If I had been as sensitive as that in the 1960s, I’d still be in Savannah. Every person in this room has endured a slight. Every person. Somebody has said something that has hurt their feelings or did something to them — left them out."

In his autobiography, My Granfather's Son: A Memoir, Justice Thomas recalled his rocky confirmation being worse than his childhood growing up under segregation, writing, "my worst fears had come to pass not in Georgia, but in Washington, D.C., where I was being pursued not by bigots in white robes but by left-wing zealots draped in flowing sanctimony."

Click here to read "Clarence Thomas: Society is overly sensitive about race", from Yahoo! News.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

No "retirement home" for us!

Every now and then some churl writes to suggest (often forcefully) that Walt and/or Len [and Ed. Ed.] belong in a "home" of some sort -- a place where we'll be safe from the world and the world will be safe from us. Memories of Where's Poppa? spring to our collective mind. But, dear reader, know this! It'll be a frosty Friday in hell before we go quietly into any such place of asylum. Certainly not while there's a better alternative, as described in this piece sent along by Agent 9.

No nursing home for us. We'll be checking into a Holiday Inn! With the average cost for a nursing home care costing $188.00 per day, there is a better way when we get old and too feeble.

I've already checked on reservations at the Holiday Inn. For a combined long term stay discount and senior discount, it's $59.23 per night. Breakfast is included, and some have happy hours in the afternoon. That leaves $128.77 a day for lunch and dinner in any restaurant we want, or room service, laundry, gratuities and special TV movies. Plus, they provide a spa, swimming pool, a workout room, a lounge and washer-dryer, etc. Most have free toothpaste and razors, and all have free shampoo and soap.

$5-worth of tips a day and you'll have the entire staff scrambling to help you. They treat you like a customer, not a patient. There's a city bus stop out front, and seniors ride free. The handicap bus will also pick you up (if you fake a decent limp). To meet other nice people, call a church bus on Sundays. For a change of scenery, take the airport shuttle bus and eat at one of the nice restaurants there.

It takes months to get into decent nursing homes. Holiday Inn will take your reservation today. And you're not stuck in one place forever -- you can move from Inn to Inn, or even from city to city. Want to see Hawaii? They have Holiday Inns there too. TV broken? Light bulbs need changing? Need a mattress replaced? No problem. They fix everything, and apologize for the inconvenience.

If you fall and break a hip, Medicare will pay for the hip, and Holiday Inn will upgrade you to a suite for the rest of your life. The Inn has a night security person and daily room service. The maid checks to see if you are OK. If not, they'll call an ambulance. Or the undertaker!

And no worries about visits from family. They will always be glad to find you, and probably check in for a few days mini-vacation. The grand-kids can use the pool. What more could I ask for?

So, when I reach that golden age, I'll face it with a grin.

Bizarre Olympic sport intrigues Americans

Poor Len here. Walt was too busy to write this morning. He was watching Team USA play Team Canada in one of the preliminary games of the Olympic women's hockey tournament.

The Canuck ladies [Eh? Ed.] squeaked by the Americans 3-2 on the strength of a disputed goal. The Americans claimed the referee had blown her whistle before the puck entered their net, but the referee ruled the play hadn't yet Finnished.

Regular readers of WWW will know that Walt and yr. obdt. svt. are huge hockey fans. [As opposed to minute hockey fans? Ed.] We have to remind ourselves that many of our readers may not see the attraction of a game that seemingly revolves around whacking the opposition with sticks or crunchng them into the boards.

A dim view of the game is taken in Americans states like Arizona, where insane people like NHL Commissioner Bitchman seems to think interest is keen. We see this reflected in "Nation Intrigued By Bizarre Olympic Sport Of Hockey", seen today in "America's finest news source", The Onion. We cannot but chuckle and trust that hockey fans everywhere will do the same.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Univision poll shows world's Catholics deeply divided on moral issues

The Spanish-language network Univision has just released the results of a massive poll of Catholics in 12 countries with some of the world’s largest Catholic populations. The poll confirms that there are sharp differences of opinion amongst self-identified Catholics over Church teachings.

The poll of 12,000 Catholics, conducted by Bendixen & Amandi International, reveals a church dramatically divided between the developing world in Africa and Asia, which hews closely to traditional doctrine on issues such as same-sex "marriage", abortion and contraception, and the "Western" countries of Europe, North America and parts of Latin America, where there is considerable support for practices that the Church traditionally taught are immoral.

Recent pronouncements by Pope Francis have muddied the holy water on things like homosexuality, but we'll leave the party pope's pandering aside for now.

Catholics in developing countries are more accepting than their European and American counterparts of Church teachings on homosexuality and contraception. The poll found, for example, that 99% of African respondents oppose same-sex marriage, while in the USA only 40% think it's unnatural and disgusting. (OK, I admit to a bit of editorializing there.) 80% of Africans (polling was done in the Congo and Uganda) accept the Church teaching that women cannot be ordained to the priesthood, while only 30% of European Catholics agreed.

Should divorcés who remarry outside the Church be able to receive communion? Traditional teaching says not, but only 19% of Catholics in the European countries and 30% of those in Latin America agree.

Most disturbing to traditionalists was the finding that the majority of Catholics, worldwide, would allow abortion, at least in some circumstances. Overall, 65% said abortions should be allowed: 8% in all cases and 57% in some, such as when the mother’s life is in danger. The highest support for abortion is in European countries, then Brazil and Argentina, then the USA, where 76% said it should be allowed in some or all cases.

Walt recommends reading the entire article in the Washington Post: Pope Francis faces church divided over doctrine, global poll of Catholics finds

Towards the end of the piece the writers raise a question with grave implications for the future of Church doctrine. Now that the Church is run by a man whose ambition is to be the most popular pope ever -- even more popular than JPII! -- is Church doctrine to be altered according to the tides of public opinion?

"Since the liberalizing and divisive Second Vatican Council," they write [Walt's emphasis], "Pope Benedict XVI and Pope John Paul II appeared to approach the gap [between dogma and public opinion] with an explicit plan: Narrow it. They emphasized doctrine and called for institutions that wanted to call themselves Catholic to follow the rules.

"So what is Pope Francis’s plan, if he has one? Critics say his solicitation of opinions wrongly gives the appearance that Catholicism is a democracy.... Jose Casanova [a sociologist of religion at ultra-liberal Georgetown University] said it’s not clear what Francis plans to do with the research, but the approach 'fits with his idea of the church going out into the world and encountering the world as it is, not expecting the world to come to it.'

"The Church 'may be in a period of moral evolution,' he said."

Moral evolution, eh... That's a pretty ominous phrases. Walt wonders if it really means what's right and wrong is subject to change without notice, depending on the results of the latest poll. "If people don't like what the Church teaches, then the Church will teach what they do like." Lord, save us!

Screw up my burger order and I'll kill you!

How wonderful to live in a country where the Constitution guarantees every idiot the right to bear arms. Agent 17 has alerted Walt to an AP story which originated with WOOD-TV in Michigan.

Grand Rapids MI police say that around 3 AM on Monday, a woman fired a shot into a local Mickey D's drive-through window after workers got her burger order wrong a second time. Shaneka Torres, age 29, was arraigned Monday on charges of carrying a concealed weapon, discharging a firearm and another gun charge.

Police say two women became angry when workers got their order wrong Sunday evening. They were told their next meal would be free. So they returned a couple of hours later, and workers screwed up their order again! Whereupon the passenger got out of the car, yelled at the workers, pulled a gun and fired into the window. No-one was hurt.

Employing what Chief Wiggum of the Grand Rapids PD called "good police work", the coppers tracked the miscreants down through a phone number they left after the argument over the first order.

Innocent question from Walt: The race of the offender is not reported. How many of you think she was probably white?

Agent 17 says the comments following the online version of the story are funny, but Ed. couldn't get the page to load. Here's the link if you want to give it a try.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Memo to voters in Niagara Falls, Canada

Poor Len Canayen here. Walt is out of town today. He's gone to the capital to attend the Bar Association's annual Mann Act Dinner-Dance. But he asked me to pass on a message from Agent 3 to the voters in the Ontario riding of Niagara Falls, concerning the by-election to be held on Thursday.

Agent 3 thinks the only one of the three major parties' candidates who will stand up for the ordinary people -- not special interests -- is the NDP candidate, Wayne Gates.

Walt endorses Wayne Gates. So do I. Send a message to Queen's Park. Get out and vote for Wayne.

Memo from Ed.: Walt has indeed read and endorsed this message. We have (alas) not been paid anything for posting it!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Anti-immigrant sentiment on the rise in... SWITZERLAND?!

The Swiss are a famously tolerant people -- even more so than Canadians! They are known to be polite, orderly, peaceful and clean. So it stands to reason that they would be increasingly concerned about the large and rapid influx of people who are not... errr... you get the picture. If you don't get the picture, look at this!

This poster is the work of the Swiss People's Party -- a nationalist grouping which has come from nowhere to a position of considerable political clout, holding over a quarter of the seats in Switzerland's lower house. The party was born of the backlash against mass immigration, particularly of Muslim "refugees" from Africa and the Middle East.

Other posters show a huge tree crushing a map of Switzerland, and a heavily veiled woman beneath the headline "1 million Muslims soon?" The posters are meant to encourage voters to support a proposal to impose an absolute limit on the number of foreigners who can move to Switzerland each year.

Voting is in progress even as we write. Recent polls show growing support for the plan, with 43% of people surveyed on January 21st backing the proposal, against 50% opposed and 7% undecided. A month earlier only 37% were in favour, with 55% against and 8% undecided.

In the past, Swiss voters have approved a number of measures loosening immigration rules. But the tide turned in 2009 when voters approved a plan to ban the construction of new minarets. The message would seem to be clear. Half a million Muslims out of a population of just 8 million is enough!

If the tolerant Swiss vote to restrict immigration, will the people of other "white Christian" countries have the courage to follow their lead? The UK already has its British National Party and UK Independence Party. How about an American People's Party? [Or a Canadian People's Party?! Len.] Where do we sign up?!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

No "well wishes" from Walt

I am reading a blog headed "Former high school bully congratulates gay victim after seeing marriage proposal online". But gay victimhood is not what this post is all about. No indeed. Heard too much about that already. This post is about proper English usage.

The lead-in for the piece in question is "Well wishes are customary after an engagement. But a congratulatory note from a former high school bully is not one you might expect." Memo to Lakshine Sathiyanathan: You may wish to extend "good wishes" to another gay victim, but there's no such thing as "well wishes"!

I'm not going to put the error down to Blogger Sathiyanathan's not being a native speaker. I have heard and seen that error several times in recent months, notably in lamestream media reports of tragedies of various kinds -- the reports that quote some politician or celebrity as saying "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims". When they add, "You can post your well wishes on such-and-such website," I tune out.

Dear gentle "writers"... "well" can be an adjective or an adverb. [Or a noun! Ed.] You may be well pleased. You may well wish someone well, as opposed to ill. But the wishes you extend ought to be GOOD...or even BEST...not "well".

Memo from Ed.: I have read and do hereby endorse this message. Good said, Walt!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Head of Mormon "church" summoned to face UK charges of "fraudulent teaching"

Here's one for the books -- the law books that is. The Fraud Act, 2006 -- a British statute -- says it is a crime to make representations which are known to be untrue, with the intent of defrauding someone else. The Westminster magistrates believe this covers preaching something which is false, in order to get someone to give money to your "church". The notion invites considerable debate over what's true and what isn't, and whether someone can be persuaded to contribute to a "church" by the power of preaching.

The magistrates have issued a summons requiring Thomas Spencer Monson, of Salt Lake City, to appear before to answer the charge of contravening Section 1 of the said act. Mr. Monson [Elder Monson? Reverend Monson? Ed.], age 86 [definitely "elder" then. Ed.] is the president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, better known to most of us as the Mormons.

According to The Telegraph, two former Mormons [kind of has a ring to it -- "former Mormons" -- if they were farmers they'd be "former farmer Mormons". Ed.] went to the Old Bill complaining that seven Mormon teachings were fraudulently presented to them as true, causing them to pay an annual tithe to the "church".

The teachings which Mormons believe, but which the magistrates charge are untrue, include:
- The Book of Mormon was translated from ancient gold plates by Joseph Smith, is the most correct book on earth, and is an ancient historical record
- All humans alive today are descended from just two people who lived approximately 6,000 years ago
- Native Americans are descended from an Israelite family which left Jerusalem in 600 B.C.
- The Book of Abraham is a literal translation of Egyptian papyri by Joseph Smith.
Click here to read all seven (allegedly) false teachings.

"Allegedly"... Walt uses the word on the advice of Agent 3, recognizing that there will undoubtedly be considerable argument as to whether the teachings are true or false. After all, just because South Park doubts the veracity of the Word according to Joseph Smith doesn't make Mr. Smith a false prophet...does it?

We must seriously consider attending the trial, if there is one. (Elder Monson might choose to ignore the summons, since it does not purport to be issued on behalf of God or even Her Britannic Majesty. Whatever happened to the old customary language?) Said trial, if there is one, will surely make the Scopes Monkey Trial look like... errr... a Sunday school picnic.

If there is a trial, the verdict will be awaited with considerable trepidation by countless televangelists and, dare we say it, priests and bishops of the One True Church. Suppose the Pope were proven wrong about something which he taught (not infallibly), for instance that you don't really have to be Catholic to be saved. Could we then claim a refund for all those Peter's Pence we've given over the years? Doesn't bear thinking about, does it...

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Diary of a snow shoveller

Ed. here. A number of our agents have flocked off to Florida, leaving Walt, Poor Len and yr obdt svt here in the cold, looking out the frosted glass of the cabin window. To make those who have refugeed south feel even more warm and smug [sic], we present "Diary of a Snow Shoveller". Thanks to Agent 9.

December 8: 6:00 PM. It started to snow. The first snow of the season and the wife and I took our cocktails and sat for hours by the window watching the huge soft flakes drift down from heaven. It looked like a Grandma Moses Print. So romantic we felt like newlyweds again. I love snow!

December 9: We woke to a beautiful blanket of crystal white snow covering every inch of the landscape. What a fantastic sight! Can there be a more lovely place in the whole world? Moving here was the best idea I've ever had. Shovelled for the first time in years, felt like a boy again. I did both our driveway and the sidewalks. This afternoon the snowplow came along and covered up the sidewalks and closed in the driveway, so I got to shovel again. What a perfect life.

December 12: The sun has melted all our lovely snow. Such a disappointment. My neighbor tells me not to worry, we'll definitely have a white Christmas. No snow on Christmas would be awful! Bob says we'll have so much snow by the end of winter, that I'll never want to see snow again. I don't think that's possible. Bob is such a nice man, I'm glad he's our neighbour.

December 14: Snow, lovely snow! 8" last night. The temperature dropped to -20. The cold makes everything sparkle so. The wind took my breath away, but I warmed up by shovelling the driveway and sidewalks. This is the life! The snowplow came back this afternoon and buried everything again. I didn't realize I would have to do quite this much shovelling, but I'll certainly get back in shape this way. I wish I wouldn't huff and puff so.

December 15: 20" forecast. Sold my van and bought a 4x4 Blazer. Bought snow tires for the wife's car and two extra shovels. Stocked the freezer. The wife wants a wood stove in case the electricity goes out. I think that's silly. We aren't in Alaska, after all.

December 16: Ice storm this morning. Fell on my ass on the ice in the driveway putting down salt. Hurt like hell. The wife laughed for an hour, which I thought was very cruel.

December 17: Still way below freezing. Roads are too icy to go anywhere. Power was off for five hours. I had to pile the blankets on to stay warm. Nothing to do but stare at the wife and try not to irritate her. Guess I should've bought a wood stove, but won't admit it to her. I hate it when she's right! I can't believe I'm freezing to death in my own living room.

December 20: Electricity's back on, but had another 14" of the damn stuff last night. More shoveling. Took all day. Damn snowplow came by twice. Tried to find a neighbour kid to shovel, but they said they're too busy playing hockey. I think they're lying. Called the only hardware store around to see about buying a snow blower, and they're out. Might have another shipment in March. I think they're lying. Bob says I have to shovel or the city will have it done and bill me. I think he's lying.

December 22: Bob was right about a white Christmas, because 13 more inches of the white shit fell today, and it's so cold it probably won't melt till August. Took me 45 minutes to get all dressed up to go out to shovel, and then I had to piss. By the time I got undressed, pissed and dressed again, I was too tired to shovel! Tried to hire Bob, who has a plow on his truck, for the rest of the winter; but he says he's too busy. I think the asshole is lying.

December 23: Only 2" of snow today, and it warmed up to zero. The wife wanted me to decorate the front of the house this morning. What, is she nuts!!! Why didn't she tell me to do that a month ago? She says she did, but I think she's lying.

December 24: 6". Snow packed so hard by snowplow, I broke the shovel. Thought I was having a heart attack. If I ever catch the son-of-a-bitch who drives that snowplow, I'll drag him through the snow by his balls and beat him to death with my broken shovel. I know he hides around the corner and waits for me to finish shovelling and then he comes down the street at 100 miles an hour and throws snow all over everywhere I've just been! Tonight the wife wanted me to sing Christmas carols with her and open our presents, but I was too busy watching for the goddamn snowplow.

December 25: Merry f@#%&@#g Christmas! 20 more inches of the f@#%&#g tonight. Snowed in. The idea of shovelling makes my blood boil. I hate the snow! Then the snowplow driver came by asking for a donation and I hit him over the head with my shovel. The wife says I have a bad attitude. I think she's a f%#@%@#g idiot. If I have to watch "It's a Wonderful Life" one more time, I'm going to stuff her into the microwave.

December 26: Still snowed in! Why the hell did I ever move here? It was all HER idea. She's really getting on my nerves.

December 27: Temperature dropped to -30, and the pipes froze. Plumber came after 14 hours of waiting for him; he only charged me $1,400 to replace all my pipes.

December 28: Warmed up to above -35. Still snowed in. That woman is driving me crazy!!!!!

December 29: 10 more inches. Bob says I have to shovel the roof or it could cave in. That's the silliest thing I ever heard. How dumb does he think I am?

December 30: Roof caved in. I beat up the snow plow driver. He is now suing me for a million dollars -- not for only the beating I gave him, but also for trying to shove the broken snow shovel up his ass. The wife went home to her mother. 9" predicted.

December 31: I set fire to what's left of the house. No more shovelling.

January 8: Feel so good! I just love those little white pills they keep giving me. Why am I tied to the bed?

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Book review: Ann Coulter explains racism and reverse racism

Reader's of Walt's previous post (on Bill O'Reilly's interview with President Obama) will gather (correctly) that I've been reading Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama (Sentinel, 2012) by best-selling author and conservative darling Ann Coulter. I give it my highest recommendation, but warn those of a conservative and/or libertarian who suffer from high blood pressure to take a chill pill before reading.

Of her book, Ms Coulter says "This isn't a story about black people -- it's a story about the Left's agenda to patronize blacks and lie to everyone else." She writes a fearless and politically incorrect history of race relations in America to demonstrate how guilty white liberals twist that history to accuse the innocent (the Tawana Brawley case), acquit the guilty (O.J. Simpson) and foment racial hatred (Al Sharpton) -- all in order to win politically. And win they have, getting Al O'Bama not just elected but -- in spite of a demonstrably poor record -- re-elected!

Spoiler alert! - Walt tries to avoid posting lengthy quotes from any article or book he recommends, but the conclusion of Mugged is so pithy and substantial that I'm going to defy Ed. and give you the last page, in its entirety. The summary topic is white guilt.

White guilt has never produced anything but catastrophe.

White guilt fuelled the liberal crime policies that resulted in tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of murders, to say nothing of maimings, burnings and rapes. White guilt got us huge tower blocks of public housing that are fortresses of social pathology. It produced the entire entitlement-dominated politics we have now.

It's led the nation to turn a blind eye to the ticking time bomb of exploding illegitimacy rates.

It got an acquittal for OJ as a result of the trial being moved to a venue that would produce more black jurors than the courthouse in the jurisdiction where the crime occurred.

It produced a destructive welfare state that was untouchable for decades. It got us anxiety, anger, fear and a major political party incapable of making an argument more sophisticated than: "You racist!"

And it got us the most left-wing president America has ever seen.

When there were so few cases of white-on-black hate crimes that liberals had to start making them up, wasn't that a clue that the Klan wasn't preventing black progress any more? If white people could be shorn of all racism overnight, it's not clear how that would improve the black condition.

On the other hand, if all black people woke up tomorrow morning with the cultural predilections of Korean Americans, all sociological disparities -- income, crime rates, out-of-wedlock births -- would vanish within ten years. Both thought experiments are unfair, but one at least has a practical resonance to it.

As Shelby Steele has said: "Whites don't think they have the moral authority to ask anything of black people, certainly not to judge them. But there's something wrong with people who have a 70-percent illegitimacy rate. This is a group of people who are lost. But we are surrounded by whites who refuse to tell us that."

The national obsession with racism is a self-inflicted punishment that has resulted in disaster, for everyone, but most of all for black people. The initial lie from which all other lies flow is the idea that black people's condition in America depends on white people's beneficence. It's Bull Connor's last revenge.

Further reading on WWW:
"Obama's Trayvon remark called 'hysterical and exploitative'"
"Race and crime as seen by America's lamestream media"

VIDEO: Bill O'Reilly puts President O on defensive in pre-Super Bowl interview

William James "Bill" O'Reilly, Jr. hosts the popular political commentary programme The O'Reilly Factor, which airs on the Fox News Channel. Although registered as an "independent", Bill is usually characterized as a "conservative". Let's just call him someone who prefers to think for himself rather than swallow the liberal Kool-Aid*.

Mr. O'Reilly's common-sensical turn of mind makes him feared and disliked by the lamestream media and the liberal elites...all the way to the head liberal, President Obama. You don't believe me? Check out his interview with the Prez which aired just this afternoon ahead of the Super Bowl, now in progress.

According to Erik Wemple's Washington Post blog, Bill aced this one, forcing the President to become not just defensive but downright testy on the Obamacare mess, snooping by the IRS, and the attempted cover-up of Muslim terrorist attack at Benghazi.

Sez Mr. Wemple "If nothing else, [O'Reilly] delivered on his commitment to Super Bowl Sunday, heading up an interview with a high entertainment quotient." Here it is.

* In Mugged: Racial Demagoguery from the Seventies to Obama, (Sentinel, 2012) Ann Coulter reports that the grape-flavoured drink administered by Jim Jones to 100s of his followers was actually cyanide-laced Flavor Aid.

Footnote: One of the liberals who truly despises Bill O'Reilly is Keith Olbermann, who Wikipedia describes as "a sports and political commentator" that order. Mr. Olbermann's dislike of Mr. O'Reilly is over matters of principle, of course. The fact that Mr. O used to have a show on MSNBC competing directly with Mr. O'R had nothing to do with the animosity. Or maybe it did. For an account of Olbermann's attempts to get O'Reilly fired for being a "racist", see Ann Coulter's book, cited above, pp. 112-4.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

P.K. can't be trusted on the P.K.!

The first "P.K." stands for Pernell Karl Subban, Norris Trophy-winning defenceman (?) and resident hotdog with the Montréal Canadiens. The second "P.K." stands for "Penalty Kill", which is what you have to do when a member of your team is sitting in the sin bin. That's when you want a defenceman who can actually play defence. Which (as we pointed out last week) is what the first P.K. can't do.

Sadly, P.K. can't be trusted on the Power Play [Just skip the initials. Ed.] either. We learned that this afternoon, when the Canadiens (a.k.a. the Kids from Montréal, pictured) hosted the Tampa Bay Lightning (a.k.a. the Bolts -- much better name for a hockey team) au Centre Bell in Canada's most exciting city.

It wasn't much of a game for the first period. Both teams seemed intent on a bit of a siesta. With no score several minutes into the second stanza [Sounding like a sports writer, Len! Ed.] it seemed as if the first goal would be the winner. Then TB took a penalty and the Habs went on the (occasionally) deadly power play. What happened then was terrible to behold.

On the power play, Subban and whoever's stuck with him on defence are supposed to play on the points, meaning just inside either end of the opposition's blue line. Even with the man advantage, the two defencemen may still have to make a defensive play -- for instance, stopping the opposition from clearing the puck over the blue line and out of their zone. P.K. does that about, errr, half the time.

On this occasion, as a result of being in deep rather than close to the blue line, Subban saw the puck go by him, with two TB players chasing it, and only his defence partner skating furiously backward. The defensive play, one on two, is for the defenceman to take the opposition player closest to him and let the goalie -- the estimable Carey Price -- face the other one. It would have worked this time too had P.K. not decided to stick his stick in between the TB player and Price, to stop the shot (see?) as if Price couldn't do so on his own.

Sadly, the shot hit P.K.'s stick right on the tape and caromed past Price's outstretched hand. Advantage Tampa Bay! Goat horns to Subban!

Today's question: Why is P.K. Subban immune from criticism when, as happens too often, he makes a mistake and then compounds it trying to recover? Could it be because he's, errr, black -- one of the few black players in the NHL and the only one ever to play for Montréal.

Yeah, could be. Whatever the reason, only the play-by-play commentators on RDS (the French-language channel) mentioned Subban's habit of making decisions that cause coaches to tear their hair out. That he scored an own goal was not talked about at all on the CBC telecast. The sportscast during the CTV evening news showed the Montréal goal which tied the game, and Tampa Bay's overtime game-winner. But the first goal, deflected by P.K. into his own net? Not shown. Nothing. Rien.

In fact, Subban's sub-par performances have been quietly overlooked ever since he was named to Canada's Olympic hockey team in spite of his reputation for being defensively "risky". If anyone has noticed that Habs coach Michel Therrien never plays P.K. on the P.K. -- and how could his absence not have been noticed -- they keep silent about it.

Eight defencemen have been chosen for the Canadian Olympic team. But coach Mike Babcock doesn't have to play or even dress all eight. Canadians who want their team to win should hope that political correctness doesn't force Babcock to trust P.K. to defend against some of the best players in the rest of the world.