David Kirkpatrick

April 22, 2009

Sanity on torture from the right

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:44 pm

This blockquote is taken from a much longer round-up on the torture reports, and is a very important point to consider when discussing the “merits” of torture.

I personally think anything gained by torture is far outweighed by the reprehensibleness of the practice, but since we’ve moved past debating if the Bush 43 regime tortured or not, and are now discussing whether a civilized nation ought to be torturing anyone, Manzi’s point is a breath of fresh air from some of the more strident voices on the right.

From the link:

At National Review, Jim Manzi waded into the “very serious ongoing [torture] debate here at The Corner” and writes that “my only contribution is that I don’t think this debate has defined ‘works’ properly.”

It seems to me that the real question is whether torture works strategically; that is, is the U.S. better able to achieve [its] objectives by conducting systematic torture as a matter of policy, or by refusing to do this?

When you ask the question this way, one obvious point stands out: we keep beating the torturing nations. The regimes in the modern world that have used systematic torture and directly threatened the survival of the United States — Nazi Germany, WWII-era Japan, and the Soviet Union — have been annihilated, while we are the world’s leading nation.

November 5, 2008

There is Hope …

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:09 am

… at the National Review’s Corner.

From the link:

The View from Harlem   [Mike Potemra]


It happened, almost too quickly, what everyone was waiting for. Is it really possible to sneak up on a crowd of many thousands of people? At 11 PM, the big-screen TV at the corner of 125th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Boulevard in Harlem went very briefly silent, and blank; and then a graphic silently popped up, “Barack Obama Elected 44th President.” It seemed to take forever for the crowd’s resulting murmur to coalesce into a shout, and then a roar. This was not a wish or a test pattern, this was it.
The scene was Congressman Charlie Rangel’s block party celebrating the election of Barack Obama. People of all races and ages were there on this mild Manhattan evening, and they were in a festive mood even before the big news was announced. American flags abounded; a platform preacher repeated “God bless America, God bless America.”
Why was I, a John McCain voter, there? A bit of personal history. I was born in 1964, and on the day I was born the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Prince Edward County in Virginia had to reopen its public schools. The county had closed the schools because they decided it was better to have no public schools at all than to have to admit black kids into them. Here we are, just 44 years later, with an African-American president, a president elected with the electoral votes of that very same Commonwealth of Virginia.
I voted for John McCain because I admire him immensely as a person, and agree with him on many more issues than I do with Senator Obama. And I ask a rhetorical question: Can we McCain voters, without embarrassment, shed a tear of patriotic joy about the historic significance of what just happened? And I offer a short, rhetorical answer.
Yes, we can.


September 27, 2008

Here’s one debate reaction from NRO

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 4:58 am

Bill Buckley rolls and would perambulate if possible to ward off anyone who hopes to dare and read this linked travesty of wordsmithery.

Thanks to Fark.com for this link.

September 26, 2008

Ace of Spades is one of the last …

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:29 pm

… on the far right carrying water for the failed Palin veep pick.

Even the ladies at the National Review’s Corner have turned their backs. Here’s the article by Kathleen Parker that kicked off the to-the-curb kicking.

From the second link:

Palin’s recent interviews with Charles Gibson, Sean Hannity, and now Katie Couric have all revealed an attractive, earnest, confident candidate. Who Is Clearly Out Of Her League.

No one hates saying that more than I do. Like so many women, I’ve been pulling for Palin, wishing her the best, hoping she will perform brilliantly. I’ve also noticed that I watch her interviews with the held breath of an anxious parent, my finger poised over the mute button in case it gets too painful. Unfortunately, it often does. My cringe reflex is exhausted.

Palin filibusters. She repeats words, filling space with deadwood. Cut the verbiage and there’s not much content there. Here’s but one example of many from her interview with Hannity: “Well, there is a danger in allowing some obsessive partisanship to get into the issue that we’re talking about today. And that’s something that John McCain, too, his track record, proving that he can work both sides of the aisle, he can surpass the partisanship that must be surpassed to deal with an issue like this.”

When Couric pointed to polls showing that the financial crisis had boosted Obama’s numbers, Palin blustered wordily: “I’m not looking at poll numbers. What I think Americans at the end of the day are going to be able to go back and look at track records and see who’s more apt to be talking about solutions and wishing for and hoping for solutions for some opportunity to change, and who’s actually done it?”

If BS were currency, Palin could bail out Wall Street herself.

February 27, 2008

William F. Buckley, RIP

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 1:13 pm

William F. Buckley, founder of the National Review and one of the architects of conservatism in the United States over the last half centry, died this morning at the age of 82.

This is from the editors at the National Review:

When Buckley started National Review — in 1955, at the age of 29 — it was not at all obvious that anti-Communists, traditionalists, constitutionalists, and enthusiasts for free markets would all be able to take shelter under the same tent. Nor was it obvious that all of these groups, even gathered together, would be able to prevail over what seemed at the time to be an inexorable collectivist tide. When Buckley wrote that the magazine would “stand athwart history yelling, ‘Stop!’” his point was to challenge the idea that history, with a capital H, pointed left. Mounting that challenge was the first step toward changing history’s direction. Which would come in due course.

Here’s a remembrance of Bill from NRO’s the Corner:

Bluntly Buckley   [Kathryn Jean Lopez]

From House whip Roy Blunt: “William F. Buckley was more than a journalist or commentator. He was the indisputable leader of the conservative movement that laid the groundwork for the Reagan Revolution. Every Republican owes him a debt of gratitude for his tireless efforts on behalf of our party and nation. “While Mr. Buckley’s successes are vast, his longest lasting influence will always be through the work of the National Review – a magazine he founded more than five decades ago to give a voice to the brand of conservativism we associate with the modern Republican Party. Even though Mr. Buckley is no longer with us, the impact he has made will forever serve as a monument to the achievements of this honorable man.”

January 12, 2008

Enjoying that crow …

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:26 pm