Eye on the Watcher’s Council

As you may know the members of the Watcher’s Council each nominate one of his or her own posts and one non-Council post for consideration by the whole Council. The complete list of this week’s Council nominations is here. The position on the Watcher’s Council has been filled: the estimable New Sisyphus has been replaced by Joshuapundit. I’ll miss New Sisyphus and I’m not familiar with Joshuapundit’s work. I’ll look forward to seeing what he has to say. Here’s what the Council members nominated this week.

Dr. Sanity, “In Denial—the Bill is in the Mail”

Pat Santy believes that the documents from Iraq that have recently been released to the public will confirm Saddam Hussein’s pursuit of nuclear, chemical, bacteriological, and radiological weapons and his collaboration with Al-Qaeda.  I don’t believe they’ll be nearly this dispositive but we can only hope.  She goes on to observe that the Left is in denial and that:

“…the shibboleths and platitudes of the the left that have been the glue holding together the house of cards of their ideology since the end of the last century, are no longer capable of preventing the collapse and disintegration of that ideology.”

I think that Pat should be penalized five yards for over-generalization and that there’s a lot of denial going around these days.  It’s a fine rant, though.

The Glittering Eye, “Whose news media are they, anyway?”

This is my submission for the week.  It’s not about immigration.  Call me a rebel.

The Strata-Sphere, “Immigration:  Legal and Illegal”

I think that AJ Strata and I are basically on the same page on the subject of immigration although I don’t think the work ethic issue is quite as large as he appears to.  There’s one thing he mentions with which I disagree completely:  birthright citizenship.  I believe that birthright citizenship is an indispensable part of our system and to understand why you need merely reflect on the riots in France this fall and the situation with the Turkish Gastarbeiteren in Germany:  a significant proportion of the population native-born (and even with native-born parents) who aren’t citizens of their native countries i.e. France and Germany respectively or anywhere else.

Perhaps to the regret of many here assimilation has never been a requirement for entry.  Perhaps it’s time for that to change.  I’m not too concerned about it.  I think that the pull of American culture is nearly irresisistible to those who live here (and a lot who don’t) and that we’re erecting most of the barriers to assimilation ourselves and don’t need to erect any more (which abolition of birthright citizenship surely would).

Done With Mirrors, “Bush Avoids ‘War’”

Callimachus considers the implications of the president’s recent policy speech on the war in which he never used the word and finds a lot less to that fact than meets the eye.  Complete with historical parallels.

At the risk of appearing to find a Clinton under every bed I think this is where Clinton’s finely-parsed brinksmanship in language has brought us.  Gang, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.

Rhymes With Right, “First Amendment:  Void in San Francisco”

Greg comments on more PC absurdity from San Francisco’s leading citizens.  One more time:  free speech includes speech you disagree with.  I don’t know enough about the actual events being described to comment much more about this.

I will disagree with Greg about Francis.  He wasn’t the “gentlest of Christian saints”.  He was the bravest, boldest, and most outrageous.

ShrinkWrapped, “About the Children”

I’ve got to admit that I’m becoming downright fond of ShrinkWrapped.  In this post he notes the relationship between the immigration issue and the story of Abdul Rahman, the Christian convert in Afghanistan who was to be tried for apostasy.  Would this be a good time to bring up the story about Napier and suttee?

The multi-culturalist belief system that he criticizes is one of the barriers to assimilation that I wrote about above.

On my part I don’t see any problem with seeing the good in other cultures but preferring your own.

New World Man, “Meanwhile, author of bestselling book on pottery recommends newspapers use more clay”

Matt certainly wins the prize for longest title this week.  In this post Matt considers Glenn Reynolds’s advice for saving the newspaper industry.  I’ve already given my advice:  a good place to start would be to stop thinking of bloggers as competitors and adversaries and start thinking about them as customers and resources.

Right Wing Nut House, “A Slap in the Face”

Rick Moran contrasts the illegal aliens demonstrating in the streets with those who came here legally using the experience of someone near and dear to him as an example.

The Education Wonks, “Walking Out on Their Futures?”

EdWonk notes the numbers of Los Angeles student who cut school to participate in the illegal alien demonstrations there.  He also notes the dramatic difference between the attitudes here towards migrants and the attitudes in Mexico.  We are much, much more liberal.

I think it also bears noting that many of the kids were bussed to the demonstrations on the taxpayer’s dime.  I wonder how many of the kids who didn’t spend the whole day demonstrating returned to classes?

Gates of Vienna, “Commonsense Prevails in the House of Lords”

Dymphna has posted another in her series of posts on Muslim women, “I Could Scream”.  This one highlights the story of Shabina Begum and her campaign to wear the hijab in school in Britain.  I see the wearing of the hijab as more of a political statement than a religious one and, consequently, precisely the sort of thing that our First Amendment (which, of course, the British don’t have) protects.

But the issue is complex and IMO difficult.

The Sundries Shack, “Sean Penn, Abuser Without Courage”

Does Sean Penn really beat up on an Ann Coulter doll when he’s upset?  That strikes me as downright weird.  I don’t care much for Ms. Coulter myself.  I don’t find her at all attractive and, at least to my taste, she suffers from the greatest flaw in a humorist:  she’s not funny.  But beating up on a doll?  Brrrr.

Joshuapundit, “What Bush Needs to do to Come Back”

This is Freedom Fighter’s inaugural submission as a member of the Watcher’s Council and I see things with which I agree and things with which I disagree.

I agree that Bush has been damaged politically, that a strong president would be better than a weak one, and that Bush has been subjected to unfair and unrelenting hectoring from his political opponents (as Clinton did before him).  I disagree with him on the merits of the Dubai Ports World deal.   However, other than that I think his advice is pretty good:

  • deal more effectively with the Sauds
  • reach out to moderate American Muslims
  • reduce dependency on oil
  • figure out a course of action on Iran (I suspect this is keeping the White House up late at night)

Well, I know what posts I’ll vote for.  Which posts would get your vote?

1 comment… add one
  • Hi Eye,
    Thanks for weighing in!

    As I said, I don’t think it was the ports deal per se that damaged Bush so severely (though I feel it was still an amazingly bad idea ) as much as the fact that the ports deal crystallized the feeling that Bush is too damned close to the Sunni autocracies to effectively prosecute this war.

    Sometimes a comparitively minor thing takes on major importance because of the actions that preceded it.

    He has some major ground to recover on this, and I’m hoping he does.

    Best Regards,

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