Monday, February 16, 2009

Monday musings...

Pakistan's government announced today that it will try to appease Islamic extremist terrorists:
"The government agreed to impose Islamic law and suspend a military offensive across much of northwest Pakistan on Monday in concessions aimed at pacifying the Taliban insurgency spreading from the border region to the country's interior."
Appeasement didn't work for Neville Chamberlain against Hitler and his gang of terrorists in the 1930s; and it won't work now.

Yay! The Notre Dame men's hoops team now has two wins in a row--the big blowout last Thursday over Louisville, and now yesterday's 10 point win at home over South Florida. Finally, shots are going in, big stops on defense are being ground out. Of course, it might be too late...

The bad news for my favorite teams was the Red Wings--they lost in a shootout to Colorado, 6-5. One gets the feeling that Coach Babcock was not happy with Chris Osgood's goaltending. Look for Wing backup goalie Ty Conklin to continue to get plenty of opportunities.

But the University of Michigan men's hoops team gutted out a tough 70-67 OT win over Northwestern, perhaps keeping the team's NCAA tourney hopes alive. They need to beat both Minnesota and Purdue at home, one suspects, to have a chance. Great game for Michigan's Manny Harris, who has a chance to have a great collegiate career and be All Big 10 before he's through.

In hockey, goaltending is key; in basketball, you need good guard play, don't you...

Good news for conservatives: in Glamour magazine, of all places, one finds presented, squarely, some honest truths concerning abortion:
"An article near the very back of the March issue treats abortion with a level of honesty rarely found in such venues. “I am still filled with regret . . . that I will never meet [my] child,” one Virginia woman announces. Hers is one of many similar stories of regret and pain featured in the article. Abortion is not a clean choice; it’s a life-changing (and -ending) decision with traumatic repercussions, a wrenching and frequently lonely ordeal that one can never be adequately prepared for — and our culture and our clinics often don’t try to help much at all. The writers and editors at Glamour will never be mistaken for pro-life propagandists, but they didn’t shy away from these truths. This is refreshing."
And indeed it is. R. Emmett Tyrell over at The American Spectator has been arguing for years that one thing conservatives must do is to penetrate the liberal "kultursmog", as he put it--that is, to penetrate and challenge the liberal views one often finds in various media and other sources of cultural trends. Maybe some conservative ideas are starting to do that.

By the way, I commented late last week on Richard Nadler's article in NR championing immigration and urging conservatives to support it, and pointed out one big problem with it. But I knew NR's incomparable Mark Krikorian would come out with his own response, and he has--and here's what I see as his best points:
"It’s not a bad thing that Republicans and Democrats represent different interests; any successful society needs a north pole and a south pole, a yin and yang. The problem with excessive immigration is that we’re getting too much yin and not enough yang, as it were. And because today’s immigrants side with Democrats on not just immigration policy but a host of other issues, Nadler’s prescription of me-too Republicanism on immigration can’t change that. The fact that John McCain—the exemplar of the me-too approach—couldn’t carry the Hispanic vote even in his home state of Arizona, where voters knew full well his expansionist, pro-amnesty views, suggests that the way out of the hole some Republicans find themselves in is not to keep digging.Implicit in Nadler’s argument is a kind of fatalism, an acceptance that mass immigration is inevitable: He encourages Republicans to win Hispanic votes through supporting mass immigration, without weighing the benefits of that approach against the benefits of a successful attempt to significantly decrease immigration. He calls the growing Hispanic share of the population “a demographic time bomb, triggered by the ordinary migrations of Hispanic citizens.”But mass immigration—legal or illegal—is not inevitable; it’s an artifact of government policy that can be ended by changing that policy. How can we change policy in a way that will prevent the conservative agenda from suffering? Here the two parts of the issue are often conflated; immigration policy relates to how many foreigners we admit and how we enforce immigration laws, while immigrant policy is about how we treat people we’ve already admitted.The solution for Republicans is to champion a pro-immigrant policy of low immigration—one that can stanch the immigration-driven shift toward the Democrats in the West through lower numbers and better enforcement, but that also reaches out to our fellow Americans of Hispanic ancestry both rhetorically and substantively. Republicans could support overhauling the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to provide professional and efficient service, and loosening some of the deportation requirements for legal immigrants with families here convicted of minor crimes."

Bingo--control our borders, but reach out as well.

Will baseball fans punish the game for the continuing steroid scandals, et al? I suggested the other day that they sure hadn't done so yet--and today, here's some data that supports that conclusion:
"Last year, fans were so enraged by the betrayals, so infuriated by what the commissioner and union and media and superstars themselves had allowed to happen, that only 78.6 million of them attended games, and they handed Bud Selig and Co. only $6.5billion to divvy up.That's all of 370 fewer fans per game than in 2007, roughly, but $425 million more in overall revenue. During the worst recession since FDR was in office. Yeah, you sure showed them."