…by a Nobel Prize winner:
…leading scientists know that the “prestige” academic journals are biased in favor of flashy and politically correct research findings, even when such findings are frequently contradicted by subsequent research. This is important in the context of the global warming debate because Nature and Science have published the most alarmist and incredible junk on global warming and refuse to publish skeptics. (Full disclosure: Nature ran a negative editorial about us a few years back and a much better but still inaccurate feature story.) Claims of a “scientific consensus” rely heavily on the assumption that expertise can be measured by how often a scientist appears in one of these journals. Now we know that’s a lie.
This was one of the revelations of Climaquiddick, that the warm mongers continue to try to paper over.
What happens in Obama’s America is that people think that it’s intrinsically racist to criticize the president. If that cartoon had been published six years ago, with “Obama’s” replaced by “Bush’s,” would it have been racist then? If not, what would be the difference, other than the melanin content of the two mens’ skin? The editor shouldn’t have apologized, or retracted. He should have called out the detractors as the racialist demagogues they are.
…for most of the three years since Obamacare was passed, the majority of the population has disapproved of it (see the second chart here at Real Clear Politics), yet that didn’t really translate into significant public anger or political action, beyond the 2010 mid-term election results. In fact, Sen. Ted Cruz’s filibuster attempt and the House’s short-lived shutdown appeared to push public opinion against those actors rather than against Obamacare.
But that has changed, and dramatically, with the law actually going into effect — and Healthcare.gov going live — back on October 1st. For the first time, Obamacare got “close enough” to significant portions of the American electorate to trigger a sudden shift in actual emotional response from a generic disapproval to outright hostility. I believe that Obama and his Administration — lulled, perhaps, by the more passive dislike evinced by the public up until now — have been caught genuinely off-guard by the dramatic change in public opinion in a month’s time, not just towards Obamacare but towards Obama himself. I believe that shift in fact represents a ‘catastrophe’ — that is, an abrupt transition from one state to another– brought on by the realities of Obamacare hitting home.
I don’t think there’s any precedent for a second-term president recovering from something like this.
When the hippies were expelled from the garden?
A mea culpa, and some thoughts from Matt W
The Left are, and have always been, the aggressors.
Roger Simon is starting to believe the conspiracy theories.
As he notes, there is something in the president’s transcripts that he doesn’t want us to see, and I think he’s right — they would reveal a mediocre student, and one who claimed foreign birth.
Lileks has some thoughts:
The point is: Donald wakes up in America, in a room bedecked with American symbols, and is unabashedly grateful. It was an appeal to a vague but widely assumed national identity that was clearly superior to the Nazi alternative in every possible way. Oh, sure, some weisenheimer in the back row may have grumbled “It ain’t our fight!” or “no fourth term for Rooosevelt!” No one in the audience went home and hugged a flag. But you could also look at the cartoon in a different light: “That Time a Cartoon was Unapologetically Grateful For America Without Including a Moronic Hyper-patriotic Caricature Named Biff Punchjaw To Let the Animators Off the Hook Lest You Think They Have No Awareness of the Nation’s Dark Side As Well.”
It stuck in my craw, my craw being dipped in extra-strength adhesive these days, because another site I visit looked at another wartime Disney cartoon and took it to task for its gendered attitudes. It is not enough to be correct today; one must also demonstrate awareness of previous incorrectness, and parade around your awareness like a flag in a rally. Annnd this came after a visit to an animation site, where the people in the comments fell over themselves to pick apart “Frozen” and the “Lost” Mickey short that preceded it. His nose! It’s historically inaccurate! Mickey’s nose didn’t look like that until 1931, but that’s the 1926 Pegleg Pete! Hah! From hell’s heart I fling my poo! Shame!
Plus, the usual weekly Captain Video as a bonus.
I’ve had jobs since I was twelve years old.
I didn’t expect the book to be available for purchase at Amazon for another couple weeks. This is the first thing in this project that happened ahead of schedule.
Working on e-versions now.
The next president?
We could do a hell of a lot worse, and have been. I wonder if his lack of a college degree is a bug, or a feature?
This isn’t creepy at all.
What color shirts do they get to wear?
[Update a few minutes later]
Related: ObamaCare and the totalitarian mindset:
Suppose some inventor hatches an idea for what he thinks would be a great and revolutionary new product. He raises money from investors, sets up office, hires people–and fails spectacularly. The company’s customer service is atrocious, the product is expensive and lousy, and the whole business plan is fundamentally flawed. Who’s to blame?
The news media, of course. After all, journalists could have put out stories touting the virtues of the product and explaining how to navigate the crummy customer-service system, and maybe then the whole business plan would have worked out.
That, at any rate, is the argument Paul Waldman puts forth in an article for the leftist American Prospect. Of course being a good leftist, Waldman is not blaming the media for the failure of a private business. But then neither would any nonleftist. Yet because the enterprise in question is a governmental one–ObamaCare, in case you’ve been away from Earth for the past two months–the argument somehow makes sense to him.
We find it not only wrongheaded but sinister (in every sense of the word). Waldman argues that journalists have a “responsibility” to provide “audiences with practical information that could help them navigate the new system”–and not just that, but to provide such information “repeatedly or people won’t get it.”
Remember, as the Democrats told us last year, government is the only thing we all belong to.
A long and depressing essay on whether or not the game is lost for the West:
As Sennels explains, “we in the West have a longstanding tradition of tolerance and openness, together with the multicultural agenda pushed by the Left, the Media, EU and UN. The cultural osmosis can therefore go only one way: Islam…drags the West back into medieval darkness, with its limitation of free speech and pre-enlightenment-style acceptance of religious dogmas and sensitivities.” Sennels does not mince words, uncomfortable as they may make us feel. He is unsparing in his analysis, based upon years of practice, observation and close study.
“Almost everyone in those days accepted that fascism had emerged from the revolutionary Left.”
The Left was just fine with Mussolini and Hitler until the latter turned on Stalin. Then they took over academia and rewrote history.
We’ve come a long way.
If he were awoken at 3 a.m. and told he had to make the case for nationalizing the banks by denying he was nationalizing the banks, he would do an entirely creditable job of it, even without a TelePrompTer. The salesmanship for Obamacare represents in microcosm the larger Obama political project, which has always depended on throwing a reassuring skein of moderation on top of left-wing ideological aims.
All politicians are prone to shaving the truth, giving themselves the benefit of the doubt and trying to appear more reasonable than they are. Obama has made it an art form. Bad faith is one of his signal strengths as a politician, and makes him one of the greatest front men progressivism has ever had.
He will never admit his deep bias toward the growth of the federal government for its own sake, or that he doesn’t care that much if Iran gets the bomb, or that he is liquidating the American leadership role in the Middle East. No, no—he is just trying to make government work, giving diplomacy a chance and pivoting to Asia, respectively.
It’s a shame more people didn’t catch on the the con last year.
Please be a dictator.
But remember, fascism is “right wing.”
[Update a while later]
Innocent Theory #1 is that Obama is essentially announcing to his base via these symbolic heckling exchanges that he no longer has the political will to issue as many power-grabbing executive orders as he’s done up til now, and that The Revolution has been put back on hold. “Ram through the progressive wish list with brazen executive orders? Why, I couldn’t do that (any more, at least) — it’d be unconstitutional!” Theory #1, if true, would certainly be in response to plummeting poll numbers and the sobering reality that the Republicans are now almost certain to maintain control of the House of Representatives in 2014, meaning Obama is conceding that he has been effectively stymied, and is thus warning his supporters not to get their hopes up.
Sinister Theory #2 is that Obama is staging these repeated calls for him to assume dictatorial powers as a way to later justify his actions when he amps up and redoubles his unconstitutional executive orders. “I wanted to be a passive and humble president, I really did — but the public demanded that I seize power, so I had to obey the people!” Theory #2, if true, would be based on the fact that Obama is a lame duck president and thus immune from any need to remain “electable”: He could basically do whatever he wanted for the next three years, however extreme, and “get away with it” since he never has to run for office again and Congress obviously will never impeach him at this stage of the game.
My money’s on door number two. Except I don’t think impeachment will be off the table. Particularly if Republicans run on it as an issue, as his polls continue to tank next year.
Sorry, but in a free society, some tragedies just can’t be prevented.
A new one.
I think they’ll find, as they did in Key Largo, that they’ll have to put curtains on the windows for those people who aren’t exhibitionists, and don’t want the dolphins to watch them copulate.
ObamaCare isn’t one:
The technocratic idea is that you put a bunch of smart, competent people in government — folks who really want the thing to work — and they’ll make it happen. But “smart, competent people” are not a generic quantity; they’re incredibly domain-specific. Most academics couldn’t run a lemonade stand. Most successful entrepreneurs wouldn’t be able to muster the monomaniacal devotion needed to get a Ph.D. Neither group produces many folks who can consistently generate readable, engaging writing on a deadline. And none of us would be able to win a campaign for Congress.
Yet in my experience, the majority of people in these domains think that they could do everyone else’s job better, if they weren’t so busy with whatever it is they’re doing so well. It’s the illusion of omnicompetence, and in the case of HealthCare.gov, it seems to have been nearly fatal.
Remember, Obama was a better speech writer than his speech writers, knew policy better than his policy advisors, would make a better chief of staff than his chief of staff. He is the Dunning-Kruger effect personified.
Thirty images that will drive you nuts.
I’ll confess to trying to end-zero a gas pump, but I’m not a fanatic about it.
Obama hits all-time lows:
Obama’s woes are not limited to honesty and his managerial skills. Fifty-six percent say he is not a person they admire, and an equal number say he does not agree with them on important issues. Fifty-six percent also say he does not inspire confidence, and 53% don’t view him as a strong and decisive leader. All of those figures are all-time records for Obama in CNN polling.
OK, so they don’t agree with him, they don’t believe or trust him, they don’t think he’s competent, they don’t admire him, or think him a strong and decisive leader. But they like him.
I don’t know how to explain this cognitive dissonance except it’s the last bastion of the fear of being thought a racist.
Five reasons childish leftists (if that’s redundant) love it.
Deconstructed. Scroll down.
…in a free society:
The present essay calls for the complete separation of school and state, indicates what a fully free market in education would look like, and explains why such a market would provide high-quality education for all children.
Will it kill Big Blue?
Edsall is simultaneously overestimating the policy sophistication of the white middle class and underestimating its morality. While it is true that, as Edsall points out, Obamacare is an aggressively redistributionist program that intends to shift hundreds of billions of dollars away from the middle class to the poor, I don’t think many voters have done the math on this. They are not reacting to the $455 billion in Medicare cuts that help to feed the Obamacare beast because not many people really understand how the new system is supposed to work. And at the same time, unlikely as it may sound to the finely tuned consciences of the New York Times editorial page, there are scores of millions of middle class white Americans who don’t hate minorities and would actually like to see things go better for them.
Sorry, lefties, the race card is maxed out.
It’s women who do it, for pretty obvious reasons.
It’s nice to see psychologists trying to do real science.
I suspect that one of the reasons Obama’s approval rating is in free fall is because of his obvious surprise and petulance in his public encounters over the disaster of Obamacare. He has made some grudging half apologies, but it is clear that the only thing he is sorry about is that he cannot — not yet, anyway — simply decree what happens with health care in this country. He believes himself above the law and is impatient about finding a means of achieving that discretion. For our own good, of course. Many observers on the Right have long known this about Obama. Suddenly, though, it is out there for all to see. The American people don’t like tyrants, even smooth-talking, Harvard-educated ones. The great trek away from Obama and what he stands for — above all, government unlimited — has begun. The journey will not be pretty, but I think it is all but certain to continue.