Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Watcher's Council Nominations

The nominations are up at the Watcher's Council. This week's submissions show a bit more variety than last week's NIE special. Do enjoy them. And if you would like to submit a post for consideration by the Council, please visit the Watcher and take advantage of his offer of link whorage.

The Council Nominations for the week are:

1. The Colossus of Rhodey - Chávez Suspected of Foul Play
CoR, in this insightful post, examines the hearsay suggestive of vote fraud by Chavez in Venezuela's referendum and, compares how the left in America reacts to Chavez and his power grab with how the same people portray Bush. He finds the double standards applied by the left so wide as to be "farcical."

2. Wolf Howling - A Methane Gas Emission in Church...
This is my look at the socialist religion of global warming, its High Mass that just concluded at the Bali Conference, and some ecomania from across the pond.

3. The Glittering Eye - The Changing Face of America
TGE looks at the "melting pot" of America and how, within that melting pot, we are in a dynamic of constant change in this country. This is a philosophical response to another's post that discusses how liberals see the country changing for the worse and are upset that they are not able to stop it.

4. The Education Wonks U.S. Students Not Comparing Well With Others
TEW points out that recent standardized tests comparing academic skills, particularly in science and math, among 15 year olds in a number of countries show that the U.S. is scoring below the international average. The leading countries are South Korea and Finland. As an aside, having lived in South Korea for five years and become intimately familiar with their attitude towards school and learning, I have to say that I am not surprised that Korea is at the top. Families are close knit, academics are held in very high regards, and society as a whole places a premium on study and academic achievement. TEW notes that U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings is unhappy with the results, and TEW makes clear he holds her incompetent performance at least in part to blame. Unfortunately, he does not fully develop that thought. I would love to know some of the specifics as to why TEW thinks Spellings is part of the problem, not the solution, as well as what possible solutions he would suggest.

5. Done With Mirrors - I Bet Not
DWM's wry commentary on billing gone mad in Norway. To describe it further would be to give it away. Suffice it to say, DWM questions whether Norweigans have as well a developed sense of humor as some suggest.

6. Rhymes With Right - Whatever Happened To Separation of Mosque and State?
RWR points to a troubling situation involving how we treat Muslim students in college relative to other religious groups, citing to a specific example where Muslim students have effectively taken over a college classroom and turned it into a prayer room with all necessary accoutrements. It is clear that the faculty has acquiesced, though it is not clear whether they offered up the room to Muslim students to begin with. The Muslim students treat the room as their private domain, they have attempted to limit access to non-Muslims, and the Dean has tolerated this. RWR finds this all a bit too Orwellian.

7. Bookworm Room - More on the Teacher Accused of Insulting Religion in His Class
BR describes in some detail an AP History teacher in California, Dr. James Corbett, who seems far more immersed in Das Kapital than in the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. The teacher used his AP classroom to indoctrinate students in his personal, seemingly Marxist philosophy rather than teach them the history they would need to know to pass the AP Test. Part of his philosophy included diatribes against religion in general and Christianity in particular, for which he and the school system are now on trial. The details are fascinating. Unfortunately, it is quite clear that there are far too many academics in our classrooms who are similarly inclined.

8. Soccer Dad - Fish Tales at the PA Aid Conference
Soccer Dad throws a jaundiced eye at the latest political telethon to raise funds to feed the endemic diseases of radicalism and corruption in Fatah and Hamas. He sees obvious undercurrents of anti-semitism and observes that the history of such funding shows that it is "conditioning, not conditional." I could not agree more. This is a very good post. And if you appreciate fish humor and puns mixed in with your political analysis, than honest to cod, you will enjoy this one.

9. Cheat Seeking Missiles - Separation of Church and State, Secularist Style
This is another post on the AP History teacher, James Corbett. The details are incredible. Being the son of a school principal, I am amazed that this was allowed to occur. The problem here is larger than Corbett. For him to be able to teach in the manner described, it requires a school administration that is not doing its job - or worse, they feel that Corbett acted appropriately. This is a very good and very troubling post.

10. Big Lizards - "The Courage to Do Nothing"
This post has as its thrust that global warming is more a socialist political movement at this point than a scientific one, and that the claims of a "scientific consensus" are at a minimum, meaningless, if not outright false. This is an excellent post with a fair number of references to some of the more recent contrary scientific studies that you can find through Senator Inhofe's website. That website is, as I've described in previous posts, an absolute font of global warming heresy.

11. Joshuapundit - The Saudis Host Hamas' Top Brass -- And Reveal the Middle East's New Order This is a fascinating post that attempts to tie together most of the strands of what is going on today in the Middle East. J believes that the NIE was supported in its assertions by the Bush administration as a message of raproachment to Iran, that Bush has abandoned Lebanon to Hezbollah, there has been a quid pro quo with Saudi Arabia for them to pump cash into our economy and stay with dollar denominated oil sales, and that Bush is going to force maximum concessions out of Israel in a "peace in our time" scenario. I strongly disagree in every particular. That said, my prognostications are wrong at least 50% of the time, so don't take my word for it. Do please see J's very well argued post and make up your own mind.

12. Right Wing Nut House - The Very Deep Thoughts of Mike Huckabee
Rick Moran does not support the Huckabee candidacy. In this essay, he picks apart the sophistry blatantly evident in Huckabee's writings on foreign policy. Huckabee does not venture beyond contradictory sound bites. This is a good essay on a very important topic given Huckabee's rise in the polls. While he seems a gentleman, the truth is I'd rather see Clinton in the White House - a possiblity that I considered, until recently, a catastrophic worst case scenario. Read this one. And if you are even considering Huckabee for the Republican nomination, read this one closely. Several times. In fact, may I suggest memorizing it?

The Non-Council Nominations for the week are:

A Stand-up President
The Ornery American

A Muslim American
National Review Online - (This is part one of a three part interview of a very important man, Muslim reformist M. Zuhdi Jasser. If you are interested, do please read Part II and Part III also)

In the End, There Can Only Be One
The American Scene

A Blueprint for the Suppression of Dissent in Europe
Gates of Vienna

The Pulpit and the Potemkin Village
Opinion Journal

Only a Few Months and Hours Together But Memories for a Lifetime.

One on One: Debunking Dastardly Debate
The Jerusalem Post

Economics Challenged?
Don Surber

Handle Huckabee with Care
TCS Daily

Manic Misinterpretations of Climate Change Capitulation by US in Bali

Mearsheimer, Walt, and "Cold Feet"

Bolton: Bush's Foreign Policy is in Free Fall

What Does It Mean To Be a Responsible Adult: Quotes Worth Considering
TFS Magnum

Iowa Debates...

1 comment:

Soccer Dad said...

Now you know how I knew what was in the NYT about the conference.
The point about "conditioning" vs. "conditional" though, is from Elder of Ziyon. I wish I could take credit for it.