3387 posts categorized "Media"

September 18, 2015

White House irritates Vatican with LGBT guests at Pope Francis visit

Well don't I just need a fresh hanky I can sob into.

September 17, 2015

The Spectator: When will Labour move against Corbyn?

If the reactions I am getting from American leftists are any indication, Labour will not budge because (to use an American reference) any criticism of Corbyn makes you the reincarnation of Joe McCarthy. This is the Manichaeism of the Left: someone is either a saint or a devil, so if you criticize him in any way you are calling him a devil, and they are delighted by his unflinching radical views so he must be a saint. If you are committed to actually getting things done, as I am, you are the worst kind of sellout. This obstinate attitude, so contemptuous of any kind of pragmatism, is self-sabotage. But they refuse to see it. So Labour falls. British liberals committed to creating change by engaging the machinery of government will have to look elsewhere.

Refuting Donald Trump's falsehoods on vaccines

Carly Fiorina's lurid, lying rant on Planned Parenthood

Vox reporter Sarah Kliff refutes lurid Fiorina description of Planned Parenthood video: "Either Fiorina hasn't watched the Planned Parenthood videos or she is knowingly misrepresenting the footage. Because what she says happens in the Planned Parenthood videos simply does not exist."

Two photos from Texas

In one photo, racist idiocy taken to new lows. In the other, white kids with guns is apparently no problem.

September 16, 2015

Schumer and Cardin object to new Republican Iran measure

With Schumer and Cardin opposing McConnell's machinations, and a deadline of Thursday for congressional action, the Iran deal looks secure. The Republicans ought to be doing their jobs and keeping the American government operating, but since Obama's first day in office they have placed thwarting him ahead of all else. This is moral treason, and when she is hauled before Congress again next month, former Secretary of State Clinton should let them have it with both barrels. In the meantime, the Nobel committee should announce the recipient(s) of the Peace Prize by Oct. 9.

September 15, 2015

Cornel West endorses Bernie Sanders

Well I'm sure this will solve all of Bernie's problems.

Four little girls

52 years ago today, racist murderers committed an act of domestic terror in Birmingham. (Warning: this powerful recreation by Ava DuVernay from "Selma" is shocking and heartbreaking. It is also a sacred act of remembrance. It begins with MLK's Nobel ceremony 15 months later in Oslo.) Here is to the four little girls.

Ben Carson Pulls Up Alongside an Idling Donald Trump

Perhaps Dr. Carson can offer his professional services.

Trump and Obama: A Night to Remember - The New Yorker

Putin phones Elton, but honors anti-gay politician

I suppose it's nice of Vlad to call up Elton to talk about gay rights, though I wonder if it carried a whiff of "I'm watching you every minute." In any case, it isn't a sign of impending moderation, in light of the news above.

Tide to Go wedding

This cheeky commercial will upset the likes of Matt Staver and Tony Perkins. It was directed by Mark Nickelsburg, who is quoted about it here.

September 14, 2015

Bernie Sanders defends abortion rights before Liberty University audience

This clip from his appearance at Liberty University shows why so many people love Bernie Sanders.

Malcolm Turnbull replaces Tony Abbott as Australian prime minister

Kim Davis will take no action against deputy clerks who issue licenses

September 13, 2015

Linda Harvey wants anti-gay Christians to segregate themselves

Works for me, Linda. Leaving is quite simple. You put one foot in front of the other.

The martyr business

Kareem is right. When 70 percent of the population identifies as Christian, it's hard to make the case that there's a war on Christianity just because a few fanatics are blocked from using the civil law to discriminate against those who don't agree with them.

Bill and Hill visit Foundry Methodist

I strolled a block east to Foundry Methodist at about noon today to see the once-and-future First Couple, who attended the church's 200th anniversary celebration. During Bill's years in the White House, this was their usual place of worship. This event was not on Hillary's campaign calendar; it was personal.

Peter Tatchell's misgivings about Jeremy Corbyn


British gay and human rights activist Peter Tatchell, who is Green and Left, raised questions about Jeremy Corbyn's troubling associations despite on balance supporting him. American leftists cheering Corbyn would do well to heed Tatchell's caution.

While Jeremy is right to dialogue with Hamas and Hezbollah as part of a peace initiative, as Tony Blair and the Israeli government have done, he was wrong to call them “friends”. These are Islamist political parties with poor human rights records that are not consistent with humanitarian values, let alone his own left-wing views.

Jeremy says he doesn’t agree with their policies but I have not been able to find any instance, until very recently, where he has publicly criticised either Hezbollah or Hamas, both of which are guilty (alongside Israel) of war crimes and the abuse of their own citizens.

Jeremy was also wrong to call the Islamist extremist Ibrahim Hewitt “my very good friend” and to share platforms with him, given that Hewitt allegedly supports Sharia law, which stipulates the death penalty for apostates, blasphemers, adulterers and gay people....

Jeremy has also made misjudgements on Russia, Ukraine, Syria and Iran. He says he wants dialogue and negotiations, not war. I agree. But this should not include collusion - even if unintentional - with human rights abusing regimes.

Tatchell, whom I greatly admire for his courage, decency, and integrity, told me, "Corbyn will give a much needed shake up to UK politics."

I have no doubt of that. On the other hand, taking back Number 10 Downing Street from such a hard-left position seems a long shot. We shall see.

September 11, 2015

Someone get Huckabee a straitjacket

Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee is becoming more and more unhinged. He can't even stick to one off-the-wall pronouncement per day. Someone get him help.

El Salvador lawmakers pass enhanced hate crime penalties

'I’m an escort, not a terrorist'

That line is right up there with "I'm a doctor, not a bricklayer!"

Tea Party Republican with fake rentboy story resigns

(Note: when I was typing the above headline, auto-correct changed "rentboy" to "reentry." I suppose the two could be related, but that wasn't the point I was making.)

James Blake and the routine police use of excessive force

Former tennis star James Blake was not resisting at all when he was tackled by a plainclothes police officer outside New York's Grand Hyatt Hotel. Why the violent take-down? He has received apologies from Mayor Bill de Blasio and Police Commissioner William Bratton; this is likely because he spoke out, because he was a well-known person, and because of the above surveillance video.

The officer has been placed on "modified assignment" while the incident is investigated. Naturally, the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association has complained about the treatment of the officer, despite his having a lengthy civilian complaint record.

Oath Keepers: Not the militia the Founders had in mind

These heavily-armed pseudo-patriots now threaten federal marshals. If these fanatics are not domestic terrorists, who is?

Stonewall clip 'Marsha P. Johnson'

The Advocate reports:

A new clip of the Stonewall film has been released, and it features a pioneer of the LGBT rights movement.

The video introduces the viewer to Marsha P. Johnson (The P stands for 'Pay It No Mind'!), who is known as one of the first LGBT activists to fight back during the Stonewall riots. She and her friend Sylvia Rivera were prominent activists in New York who fought for gay liberation and rights for transgender women.

Previously, the trailer for the film, directed by Roland Emmerich, has been criticized for eclipsing the role of trans activists and people of color in its depiction of one of the most famous moments in LGBT history. The Stonewall riots, a series of 1969 demonstrations against police in Greenwich Village, are considered the birth of the modern LGBT rights movement.

In praise of Rep. Keith Ellison

On this anniversary, I highlight one of the most decent people in Washington, a civil rights attorney who is the first Muslim elected to Congress. Thank you, Rep. Keith Ellison, for holding our country to its values and standing up to bullies like Peter King.

In April 2013, I had the honor of introducing Rep. Ellison as keynote speaker at the Bill of Rights Dinner of ACLU of the Nation's Capital.

From Cato: Magna Carta and modern controversies

On Wednesday at the Cato Institute I attended a fascinating and funny lecture by British author David Starkey on his book Magna Carta: The Medieval Roots of Modern Politics. Following him were comments by Jonah Goldberg of National Review. The moderator was Cato Senior Policy Analyst Marian L. Tupy. Cato offered this description:

The Magna Carta was a milestone that circumscribed the power of the sovereign for the first time in human history. In his new book, distinguished British historian and television personality David Starkey looks at the origins of the Great Charter in the 13th century, its significant early revisions, and the ways in which it has been interpreted and reinterpreted by subsequent generations. Starkey explains how core principles of this quintessentially English document migrated to the North American colonies and eventually became the cornerstone of the U.S. Constitution.

Near the end of the video I ask a question of Jonah Goldberg.

September 10, 2015

Get your license here

A deputy clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky pledges to obey a federal judge over his boss. On this rock is built our republic.

Photo of the week


I love this photo.

Senate Democrats give Obama victory on Iran nuclear deal

The United States Senate today struck a major blow for diplomacy before war. I wrote about the Iran deal in July.

September 09, 2015

The #Pontifex American itinerary

His Holiness will be three blocks south of me when he visits the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle. I am not planning to fight the crowds.

Matt Staver compares marriage for gay couples to sodomizing children

Kim Davis's lawyer shows his colors.

Dick Cheney: Wrong Then, Wrong Now

The breathtaking mendacity of a war criminal. (Compilation by the White House.)

Hillary Clinton addresses the Iran nuclear deal

This is a presentation by someone with the seriousness, the experience, and the judgment to become president. I wrote early in the 2008 election cycle that Hillary was formidable and not to be underestimated, and she demonstrates it again here. Contrast this with the glib and reckless attacks on the deal by several Republican candidates. And I liked her humor, after a coughing fit due to allergies during the interview following the speech, when she quipped that "Republican histamines are everywhere."

Privilege by Gaslight


In my Blade column this week: authoritarians and demagogues are trying to win by driving us crazy. Don't let them! Here's a portion:

If you didn't know better, recent news might have you thinking that anyone with a Hispanic accent is an alien; that activists protesting police violence are cop killers; and that a government official's religious freedom entitles her to impose her beliefs on an entire county.

Enough of these brazen falsehoods could drive a person crazy. This is called "gaslighting" after Charles Boyer's efforts in the 1944 movie Gaslight to make Ingrid Bergman think she is losing her mind so he can get her out of the way and steal her aunt's jewels.

When Univision news anchor Jorge Ramos challenged Donald Trump's promise to deport eleven million undocumented workers, he was treated like an undocumented worker himself. Trump has slandered Mexicans and used one murder to support a media narrative about criminal hordes flooding America that is entirely at odds with the facts. Undocumented immigrants in fact have a lower crime rate. Trump subsequently described Ramos as "raving like a madman." This is like describing women who assert themselves as hysterical. When Trump contemptuously ordered Ramos removed, the other reporters should have walked out. If tough questions are off-limits, we have a celebrity media availability, not a press conference.

These crude tactics appeal to the Trumpen Proletariat (a term coined by conservative writer Jonah Goldberg): the sort of people who vehemently opposed Obamacare but now favor single payer just because Trump is for it. Goodbye, coherent politics. Hello, fearless leader defended by a mob.

Read the whole thing here.

How Kim Davis' defenders are sounding increasingly absurd and desperate

So, will she try to stop gay marriage licenses again when she returns to the office today? Will Judge Bunning send her back to jail? Will reality suddenly conform itself to the mad fantasies of Matt Staver and Mike Huckabee? Stay tuned.

Two Turkish LGBT rights advocates killed in car accident

Awful news from western Turkey.

IML Patrick Smith visits Uganda

It turns out that International Mr. Leather 2015 is also Senior Manager of Business Development for Marvel Studios. I don't know how he looks in superhero tights, but like beauty pageant contestants everywhere, he is for world peace.

'Winger round-up: Staver, Barton, GOP obstructionism

The ghouls are out early this season.