February 26, 2005
EtherHouse *EXCLUSIVE*! -- More Ward Churchill art!
Regular readers may be surprised, but I think it's time some of us on the right stepped up to defend Ward Churchill. I can't applaud his defense of terrorists and their right — indeed, obligation — to murder "little Eichmanns" (defined as: everyone who died on Sept. 11). I can't condone his instructing his audiences on the most effective ways to carry out terrorism. And, of course, I can't stifle a laugh when I see photos of him in his office, Capitalism Condemnation Central, unironically surrounded by a shiny new iMac and assorted technological trappings.
But let's give credit where credit is due, shall we? Ward Churchill turns out to be a truly important visual artist, with a lot to say about the plight of Native Americans. Michelle Malkin, Myopic Zeal, Brainster, Ace, Say Anything, Speed of Thought, Protein Wisdom, and Confederate Yankee have all had their snarky say about this alleged plagiarism:
"Winter Attack," by Ward Churchill, circa 1980 (Photo: CBS4, Denver)
From "The Mystic Warriors of the Plains," by Thomas E. Mails, published 1972 (Photo: CBS4, Denver)
These self-styled "pundits" are saying that Churchill's art is just a reversed image of Mails'. But it's so easy to mock heartfelt artworks, isn't it, when their message makes us uncomfortable? It's so easy to condemn an image as "derivative" when what we're really trying to do is avert our eyes from the shameful truths it contains.
I ask my readers to reconsider. Thanks to a friend in the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado, I was able to obtain some little-known Churchill originals. Regardless of what you think of Churchill's political views, these works show that as an authentic Native American, he is truly committed to salvaging his nearly exterminated culture. For that, and for his innovative artistic vision, even his enemies must respect him.
The keen eye; the fine brushstrokes; the skilled application of chiaroscuro and manipulation of positive and negative space; the use of color to both shock and beguile the eye all hallmarks of a master craftsman, capable of wielding his awesome technique to repudiate the postmodern even as he elevates it. Churchill's art will do more than just challenge your assumptions about Native and European cultures; it will overturn your outmoded ideas about art itself.
Churchill is no plagiarist! Perhaps coincidentally, the pieces above looked similar. But when you look at the works I'm showing, these EtherHouse exclusives, you'll realize that his vision is wholly original. I defy you to show me any "source" that can remotely claim to have inspired these pieces. You've never seen anything like them, I guarantee!
Now forget politics for a moment, and feel yourself transported to the Great Plains, to a time before the European brought pestilence, theft, and "ethnic cleansing" to the land. Open your mind to Churchill's sensitive explorations of Native American cuture. Let the raw emotion of these blazingly original, inventive images affect you.
"Warrior: Creek Nation of Georgia." Early mosaic work (c. 1967), from the "Creek Nation" series.
"Creek Tomahawk and Stitched Bull Hide." Gouache on board. 1993, from the "Creek Nation" series.
"Hopi Rain Dancer at Rest." Seriegraph. 1990, from the "Woo-Woo Indians, not Dot-Head Indians, Stupid" series.
"White Man Doritos Bags, Beer Cans, and Technology In General Make-um Ward Churchill Heap Big Cry." Lithograph. 1999.
"What You Mean 'WE,' Kemo Sabe?" Oil on linen. 2002.
"Indigenous American, Holding Sacred Smoking Materials Forbidden by Unelected Fascist US Regime, Stares Longingly, Hopelessly Across Florida Straits Towards Free Land of Cuba, Workers' Paradise." Acrylic on fiberglass. 2003.
February 02, 2005
Photo PROOF that captured "doll" is an actual American operative!
The blogosphere has been abuzz with self-styled "journalists" claiming the John Adam hostage photo is a "hoax." Summaries of the "evidence" were found at blogs such as Powerline, ASV, Myopic Zeal, Backcountry Conservative, and Wizbang. Ace of Spades even created a "humorous" top ten list designed to mock this sickening event, and ScrappleFace joined in the mockery.However, as the file photo and story below conclusively prove, John Adam IS a real American soldier. Those who find this tragic story an occasion for humor should hang their heads in shame.
John Adam in a photo taken by his captors.
captured Military Man
John Adam with
other members of
FOX News, February 1 — A jihadi web site today gave Americans shocking evidence that “freedom isn’t free."
Derkaderkistani insurgents, working with terrorist leader al-Zarqawi, have captured Team America member John Adam, an operative under deep cover. A photograph of Adam, bound and seated in front of a flag proclaiming, “There is no god but God and Muhammed is his prophet” was displayed on a web site frequently used by terrorist groups. "Our mujahedeen heroes of Iraq’s Jihadi Battallion were able to capture American military man John Adam,” said a statement on the web site. "If you wish to see his safe return, we demand a hefty f@#%in' fee."
Disturbing proof of the terrorists’ claim to be holding Adam was revealed by Team America Leader Colonel Spotswoode at a hastily arranged press conference. “They appear to have inside intelligence,” said Spotswoode. “Only an insider would know that John holds the official rank of Military Man.”
“Team America members Gary, Chris, Sara, Lisa, and Joe have been deployed to Iraq to save the motherf%$#@ day, yeah,” Spotswoode added, warning the captors, “Terrorists, your game is through, ‘cause now you have to answer to America, F%#@ Yeah!”
Update: In what appears to have been a botched rescue operation, Team America operative Gary Johnston has apparently been captured by Iraqi militants... Developing...
But seriously, folks.
I had no idea it would go so far, but honestly, I greatly prefer it to the “beheading actual people” meme.
The next kidnap victim?
I have a 12-inch talking Rummy doll. Press a button and he declines to answer questions. Press again and he talks about “known knowns” versus “known unknowns.” Press again and he slyly insults the press corps. Very realistic. May I suggest the jihadis kidnap my Talking Rummy the next time they need to make a big statement? I’d gladly volunteer him to save a real soldier.
January 30, 2005
Al Franken IS... Comedy Gold™
I confess, I've never found Al Franken funny. Long before I was old enough to know or care about politics, back in the 70s, I used to see him on the "Franken & Davis" segment of Saturday Night Live. His smirking face on the screen was always my cue to take a bathroom break or go get a snack. I didn't find him funny in the 80s or the 90s, either, but I gave him one more try a couple days after the election. I tuned in to his Air America show for the first time, and I just couldn't stick with it. It didn't offend, or even irritate -- it just bored me.
But Al just made a fan. He made me laugh so hard on Friday I nearly plotzed.
On Friday, O'Reilly ran a segment about a CBC show that attacked FOX News (which was recently cleared for broadcast in Canada). There's plenty to criticize about FNC, God knows, so there's no reason why criticism of FOX should be intrinsically hilarious. Yet every time I see a critique of this channel, it's a tormented, hyperventilating cri de coeur from some lefty. And lefty cris de coeur are... well, they're Comedy Gold.
According to O'Reilly, the CBC show contrasted footage of him shouting with footage of Al Franken displaying hurt feelings. In the all-too-brief clip we saw, Al snuffled in a cracked, phlegmy voice about the wickedness of FOX. "I'm going to Kuwait and Afghanistan and Iraq next week for my fifth USO tour. (He wipes away a tear.) I love my country... um... (sob)... and... This breaks my heart, that this is the prevailing... that this prevails ... this kind of thinking."
I don't think I've ever laughed so hard. I drowned out most of Al's appearance with guffaws, so I had to tape the rerun to be sure I saw what I thought I saw — was he really crying, crying tears? Because FOX is mean? Yes, by God! YES HE WAS! The clip is below. It's short in length, but long on hilarity. Perhaps it'll be some kind of recompense for those who suffered through Franken's frighteningly narcissistic radio interview with Powerline's John Hinderaker. Click on the play button below to see the segment (40 sec).
Similarly, in "Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them," when he called Sean Hannity an "Irish ape-man," and speculated on whether O'Reilly suffered from "Irish flu," — tee hee, those Micks! — those were not ad hominem attacks or ethnic slurs! That was satire, not racism. But right-wingers don't understand satire, to Franken's eternal, tearful regret.)
Why does the CBC bogart these wonderful things? We send Canada all kinds of great TV, yet they haven't sent us any brilliant comedies since SCTV. And now we find they're keeping their finest Comedy Gold to themselves.
Selfish, selfish Canucks.
And to think, those poor souls who use this will never know the sheer heart-lifting joy they've missed.
Update: A more thorough description of the program in question, which was discourse-elevatingly titled "Sticks and Stones," can be found here.
January 23, 2005
Rathergate story, told in anagrams of "Powerlineblog."Well, I’ve got the Powerlineblog Rathergate anagram* narrative done. Hardest anagramming I’ve ever done. Would it have killed them to put an “a” or an “s” in the name of their site?
The Instapundit anagram narrative and the Little Green Footballs anagram narrative held together without much annotation, but this one needed chapter summaries to make sense. Like "Little Green Footballs," "Powerlineblog" contained the word “goner,” so I was able to use that term to describe Dan Rather again.
(Because this narrative isn't quite as self-explanatory as the others, I've written explanations after some of the lines in white type. Highlight to make them visible if you need them.)
A story in anagrams
Bill Burkett nurses a grudge and seeks to destroy Bush
by spreading lies through the mass media.
(That'd be Burkett.)
on prowl: Beg, lie,
libel GOP. “W = Nero!”
Begin Orwell op.
(Using supposedly nonpartisan “news” media as a partisan bludgeon = Orwellian.)
Bill Burkett forges the memos;
Dan Rather broadcasts them on his program.
Bile on pol grew.
(Burkett could no longer contain his resentment of his least favorite pol.)
Goober will pen
libel. Pow! Goner:
(Goner = Dan Rather.)
“We libel on prog.
(Prog. = abbreviation for “Program.”)
I leer — GOP blown!”
Opine well, Borg.
(Borg=“person who has been absorbed into the collective mind”--the anti-Bush media hive mind.)
Powerline and the blogosphere step in.
Now, re: GOP libel:
We blog on peril.
W, lie? Long probe...
(Did W lie about his Texas Air NG service? Blogs began to probe diligently…)
It becomes clear that Burkett is a liar.
The story falls apart.
Bingo! “W peer”? LOL!
(Per Dan, Burkett was in the "TX Air Guard," like Bush. Wrong; he was in the Army National Guard.)
Loner, below pig!
(A bit harsh, but some would feel it's a reasonable depiction of Burkett)
Pro-Lib glee now
blip. Longer woe
ere long. Pow, Lib!
(The momentary joy of having tarnished Bush was just a blip. A long woe — 4 years long — awaited the Libs.)
Dan Rather stonewalls to save his job.
Public opinion shifts in favor of Bush.
GOP libeler now:
“GOP boner? Well, I...
... I ... We probe NG!” (LOL.)
(Dan claimed he would continue to probe the National Guard [NG] story.)
No, W/GOP libeler.
(Nope, Dan. Can’t get away with it.)
Web poll: “I” gone “R.”
(The NG story swayed some independents toward Bush [“R”].)
Bad news for Burkett: Bush is re-elected.
Bill, GOP e’er won!
*Anagram: A word or phrase created using all the letters, and only the letters, of another word or phrase. Every line in black uses all the letters, and only the letters, in "Powerlineblog."
Update: Welcome, Powerline readers! Look around, check out some of the other posts listed above on the right, make yourselves at home. Read my comment on Powerline's take on the Harvard/Summers/women and math controversy. Or take a look at some recent spooky photos of NYC's bridges in a freak fog — my fogblog.
Update: I just realized I've left out the blogs on the left. These fine citizen journalists deserve anagrams that reveal their dynamic, proactive role in exposing this egregious abuse of the public trust. Here they are:
Kos: 's OK.
January 22, 2005
Feminism, or a return to Victorian stereotypes?
Chavez also notes that feminist Nancy Hopkins, a biologist at MIT, is said to have responded to Summers by citing studies indicating that "women score higher on math tests if there are fewer men in the room while they are taking the test." I know I'm missing something, but doesn't it seem odd that feminists would be interested in embracing "studies" that portray women as so stereotypically fragile?
That's a rhetorical question, of course, because I'm sure Deacon is well aware of the evolution of "feminism" and the "civil rights movement." Once they stood for taking back basic human rights; once they stood for self-sufficiency and an end to subservience. Now their Orwellian watchwords are: "Weakness is Power." "Helplessness is Invulnerability." "Victimhood is Dominance."
The "studies" Ms. Hopkins cites reek to me of feminist apocrypha, like the debunked urban legend that more women are victimized by domestic violence on Super Bowl Sunday than on any other day of the year.
And this quote is a classic of the "Oh, Colonel, I fear I shall swoon" genre of wounded-womynhood writing:
For her part, Hopkins reported that, upon hearing Summers' remarks, "I felt I was going to be sick. . . .My heart was pounding and my breath was shallow."
Dear Lord in heaven, this woman expresses herself in prose torn from the pages of a drugstore romance novel. "At last, my dear lady," the pirate king spat, "I'm going to show you a woman's place on my ship!" As he approached like a prowling leopard, his torn shirt revealing his rippling, dusky chest, I felt I was going to be sick... My heart was pounding and my breath was shallow as he roughly tore my bodice, enfolding me in the strong arms I had struggled so not to desire..."
Perhaps Ms. Hopkins is reading from the official Naomi Wolf Style Manual of Breathlessly Reporting Sexual Harassment and Other Beastly Male Behavior. Compare Ms. Wolf's statement about her "sexual encroachment" by Harold Bloom at Yale:
"He leaned toward me and put his face inches from mine. 'You have the aura of election upon you,' he breathed.
"The next thing I knew, his heavy, boneless hand was hot on my thigh. I lurched away. 'This is not what I meant,' I stammered. The whole thing had suddenly taken on the quality of a bad horror film. The floor spun. By now my back was against the sink, which was as far away as I could get. He came at me. I turned away from him toward the sink and found myself vomiting, in shock."
The quality of a bad horror film, indeed. I share her outrage, though. It's quite negligent of Yale not to have maintenance repair those spinning floors. Someone could get hurt.
Update: Bill at INDC journal examines some of the evidence for innate differences between the brains of men and women. Personally, I find it depressing that at this late date, we are still being asked to: 1. deny that men's brains and women's brains are different, and 2. act as if "different" automatically means "inferior in the case of women, superior in the case of men." As Bill points out, women in general tend to do better on language sections of standardized tests. Where's the outrage over that? Where are the statements that "boys do better on language tests when there are no girls in the room?"
January 18, 2005
Rathergate story, told in anagrams of "Little Green Footballs"As promised, here's a crack at telling the Rathergate story using only anagrams* of "Little Green Footballs." Instapundit's Rathergate anagram had the letters D-A-N to work with, which was very convenient. But I find calling Dan "goner" seems to fit. Anyway, here goes:
A story in anagrams
"Little Green Footballs."
TANG libeler: Left's tool.
"Let's fool lettering lab!"
TANG letters libel, fool!
Lo, lib net flogs a letter!
Goner abets left's ill lot,
flogs a letter. "Not libel!"
(Goner oft tells lib tales.)
Allies blog letter, font.
So. Lettering fable toll:
Flog letter, lie lots? = Ban!
Toll fell: To resign beat.
(Goner slot till late Feb.)
I'm working on anagrams of "Powerlineblog," and finding it really challenging. I'll post what I have when I'm done.
Update: Done! Powerlineblog anagram narrative is here.
Update: Thanks to Charles at LGF for the link! Glad to have you, lizardoids; poke around a bit, make yourselves at home.
*Update: It's come to my attention that not everyone knows what an anagram actually is. Basically, it's a word or phrase rearranged to make another word or phrase. All letters must be used. You'll see that every line above uses all the letters, and only the letters, in "Little Green Footballs." For more on anagrams, click on "Anagrams" under "Categories," to your right.
January 17, 2005
Rathergate story, told in anagrams of "Instapundit."
Regular readers will have noticed my fondness for anagrams. I recently started anagramming the names of some of my favorite blogs, and made an interesting discovery: I could tell the entire Rathergate story using only anagrams for Instapundit. Here it is.
Titan du Spin.
Dan puts it in.
“Tut, Dan!” I snip.
“Dan? Nut!” I spit.
I stand, input.
I sit, punt Dan.
Stint up, Dani!
Dan in tits-up.*
Update: Check out the new set: Rathergate story, as told in anagrams of "Little Green Footballs."
Update: Now the Powerlineblog anagram story is up.
January 15, 2005
Stunningly weird photos of Brooklyn & Manhattan Bridges in fog
On January 13, I woke up and looked into my back yard. At first I thought there was a fire nearby — everything seemed obscured by white smoke. The 'smoke' was actually fog — the thickest, lowest fog I've ever seen.
At 9:30, as EtherHub drove us both across the Brooklyn Bridge into midtown Manhattan, I had a chance to check out the capabilities of my new Canon PowerShot SD300. We were driving at a good clip, but I managed to get some amazing shots out the window.
I've lived in New York all my life, but I've never seen the skyline disappear so completely. The enormous gothic stone towers of the bridge were only visible for a few moments as we approached them; the rest of the time the suspension cables just disappeared up into the sky, apparently anchored to the clouds. The FDR Drive, which runs along the river up the east side of Manhattan, seemed to be a short stretch of grey in the middle of an empty, flat world of white nothingness. No river, no skyline, nothing. Even the bridges were only visible from the FDR when we were practically on top of them.
These are color photos, though you'd never know it. Here are a couple of the shots (click to enlarge):
|The Brooklyn Bridge from the FDR Drive||The Manhattan Bridge from the FDR Drive|
More below the fold. (Again, click to enlarge.)
|Brooklyn is allegedly at the other end of this bridge.||I love the ad on this cab. It's good to know I'll have somewhere to go in case those pouty ol' blue states ever really secede.||Ghost cables in the sky.|
Click here to view the complete album with more amazing shots and an animated GIF.
January 10, 2005
This Machine Kills Narcissists
I've been following the Nick Coleman/Powerline saga with interest. By now, all of us bloggers know what a dangerous threat we are to the powers that be — at least according to some of the powers that be. I’ve blogged about Brian Williams and Bill O’Reilly, but they’re just two prancing drum majorettes in the endless parade of MSM blog-haters.
The other day, I happened upon a sprawling, fascinating site about Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Some of the author’s writings on narcissists and the Internet really struck me. Check out the passages below, but for “narcissist” read “mainstream media,” or just insert the name of your favorite blog-hating personality. (Boldface mine.)
The Internet is an egalitarian medium where people are judged by the consistency and quality of their contributions rather than by the content or bombast of their claims. But the narcissist is driven to distracting discomfiture by a lack of clear and commonly accepted hierarchy (with himself at the pinnacle). He fervently and aggressively tries to impose the "natural order" — either by monopolizing the interaction or, if that fails, by becoming a major disruptive influence.
Sound familiar? Nick Coleman, does this resemble anyone you’ve seen in the mirror lately?
But the Internet may also be the closest many narcissists get to psychodynamic therapy. Because it is still largely text-based, the Web is populated by disembodied entities. By interacting with these intermittent, unpredictable, ultimately unknowable, ephemeral, and ethereal voices — the narcissist is compelled to project unto them his own experiences, fears, hopes, and prejudices.
The therapeutic process is set in motion by the — unbridled, uncensored, and brutally honest — reactions to the narcissist's repertory of antics, pretensions, delusions, and fantasies.
The narcissist — ever the intimidating bully — is not accustomed to such resistance. Initially, it may heighten and sharpen his paranoia and lead him to compensate by extending and deepening his grandiosity. Some narcissists withdraw altogether, reverting to the schizoid posture. Others become openly antisocial and seek to subvert, sabotage, and destroy the online sources of their frustration. A few retreat and confine themselves to the company of adoring sycophants and unquestioning groupies.
But take heart, pajamahadeen. The author says there is hope:
But a long exposure to the culture of the Net - irreverent, skeptical, and populist — usually exerts a beneficial effect even on the staunchest and most rigid narcissist. Far less convinced of his own superiority and infallibility, the online narcissist mellows and begins — hesitantly — to listen to others and to collaborate with them.
I think he’s only talking here about narcissists who actually participate in online culture, but who knows? As more and more MSM fixtures find themselves unable to ignore the internet, perhaps they will “begin — hesitantly — to listen to others.”
So I eagerly await the day when a mainstream media fixture says publicly, "Hey, I messed up. Everyone makes mistakes. I'd hate to think I was disseminating flat-out lies. Thanks, bloggers, for setting me straight!"
I have every hope I'll live to see that day. Or at least my grandchildren will. Maybe.