Saturday, March 11, 2006

Hague Justice

Slobodan Milosevic expired sometime this morning in his prison cell at the "International Court of Justice" in The Hague, Netherlands, in the fourth year of his genocide and crimes against humanity trial, which could only have culminated in a life sentence, if he was found guilty. This farce makes one wish for the Nuremberg trials again, the precedent setting waste of time upon which this whole monstrosity is built, where one at least knew the "trial" was going to be short, the outcome assured, and the penalty, in most cases, death. Whether one is dealing with the "Butcher of the Balkans," Saddam Hussein, Ceausescu, or Mussolini, everyone knows that these dictators are guilty of mass murder and the wholesale destruction of individual rights and lives. They are deserving only of death and the undying contempt of history. Anything else, particularly the years long spectacle of a trial where there is at least the theoretical possibility of their being set free and declared "innocent" is a horrific joke and slap in the face of those who suffered under tyranny and oppression. The Hague, instead of embodying the principle of enlightened justice, is representing the barbaric worship of forms, criminals, irrationality, and injustice in the extreme. The "International Court of Justice" should be disbanded immediately, as Milosevic's demise of ill-health/old age while waiting for an end of his trial, a verdict, and a sentence was the exact same if the court had just immediately declared him guilty, and that is unacceptable by any rational standard of justice.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Notes from the Bizarro World

You would think that a state that regularly elects a man who killed a woman, after drunkenly driving her into the water while dragging himself to shore and then going to sleep, would have no qualms about sexist discrimination or male/female differences. Not so. Ted Kennedy may have been able to get a pass from the voters and political leaders of Massachusetts for killing Mary Jo Kopechne, but what really creates a ruckus around these parts is something so vile, so heinous, so utterly contemptible that I have struggled and wrestled for several hours over whether I should share it with the rest of the world, though I hardly see how keeping it local will be possible considering the horrendous nature of this injustice. Below I have pasted the first three paragraphs of the news story in the Worcester Telegram & Gazette:

[CAUTION: ONLY GO ON IF YOU ARE A ROBUST PERSON OF GOOD HEALTH AND STRONG CONSTITUTION, WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO READ COULD BE INCREDIBLY DISTURBING AND UNSETTLING]

Female police cadets have failed a state-required physical test at a much higher rate than men, triggering concerns among Boston and Worcester police leaders. They have called for a review of parts of the exam, saying it could be discriminatory. The statistics come at a time when police chiefs across the state are pushing for greater female representation in their departments, and some have questioned whether the design of an obstacle course as part of the physical exam indirectly discriminates against women. Boston Police Commissioner Kathleen M. O'Toole has expressed concern, and Worcester Police Chief Gary J. Gemme said the test has excluded candidates who otherwise are well-qualified to be police officers.


Clearly, the situation here is dire. That females would generally perform behind men on a police obstacle course could only shock and disturb a selection of humanity that has been so blind to reality for such an extended period of time that the term "bizarro world" is scarcely adequate to describe it. Normally, I would include some sort of explanation of rational and irrational discrimination, i.e. discriminating against a qualified person based on ethnicity is irrational as it does not pertain at all to performance, whereas discriminating against those unable to pass a physical test for an extremely demanding physical job would seem to make eminent sense, but such an explanation hardly seems worth my while.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Listening to the Stars

I will preface this post by saying that anyone who listens to celebrities without any discrimination to that celebrity's ability to reason, but just because they are famous and rich (thus they must be doing something right and ingenious), deserves to be led astray.

That being said, sometimes celebrities use their media position to inform the rest of us of their often idiotic insights about the world. A perfect example occurred at the very beginning of the Academy Awards when George Clooney, after winning for best supporting actor, informed everyone that he liked "being out of touch" with the rest of Hollywood (itself a dubious concept) because it was this state of being out of touch that achieved the successes of the civil rights movement (here I was thinking that anything good that came out of that morally corrupted movement was the work of grassroots civil disobedience by those who were actually having their rights violated, and not because of any agitation from the likes of Harry Belafonte, Carl Reiner, etc.) and any other perceived reform movement since Cecil B. DeMille left New York City. Clooney is an idiot, one who has parlayed his boyish charms and liberal politics into a career (which is fortunate for him as nearly all of his movies are box office poison).

Today's post was not motivated by Clooney however, but by two twits in the country music world who decided to enlighten us all on how the governments response to hurricane Katrina demonstrated the utter bankruptcy of modern America. This case could possibly be made along the lines of altruism utterly infecting both parties and extending to all levels of government, thus creating this situation where people affected sit around and wait for the government to do something instead of rebuilding their lives by themselves and/or with their friends and families. Or how respect for property in America is so corroded that the immediate reaction of large numbers of people to such a catastrophe was to loot and pillage their fellow citizens simply because their were no police around (or because the looters were in some instances police). I might not agree with such a critique, but were these the arguments proferred by Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, I would find them intellectually stimulating and at least cogent. Instead these dynamic duo of country and half-wits everywhere posited these gems upon us:

"When you have people dying because they're poor and black or poor and white, or because of whatever they are -- if that's a number on a political scale -- then that is the most wrong thing. That erases everything that's great about our country." - Tim McGraw

"I fear for our country if we can't handle our people [during] a natural disaster. And I can't stand to see it. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure out point A to point B. . . . And they can't even skip from point A to point B." - Faith Hill

Faith Hill added that the response of the government was "embarrassing" and "humiliating," not because it has consisted of mass expropriation of wealth from the rest of the country for a disaster that was no more the fault of the rest of us as it was those affected by it, but because it wasn't fast enough an expropriation. The fact that the federal government has given itself the immoral, unconstitutional, and illogical task of responding to natural disasters and terrorist attacks with mass payouts to the victims and their families is indicative of whats wrong with the country. The fact that poor people suffer worse during disasters and economic downturns and attacks than rich is not what is wrong with this country or any other. It's what's wrong with being poor and so long as the poor are not prevented from getting out of that condition through hardwork, frugality, and self-discipline (by some sort of caste, aristocratic society of status setup, i.e. enactments and laws of the state) then those who remain poor are largely responsible for their condition. For those who are truly poor through absolutely no fault of their own it does not then follow that its the fault of the rest of us that they are poor. Social mobility still exists and has numerous proofs in the ranks of the rich and famous, not to mention the great mass of people who, while not rich, are certainly not living in poverty.

If anything, the tragedy of modern America is that nincompoops like Tim and Faith, not to mention Bill Gates, are those who rise to great fame and wealth, and go on to preach and dictate to the rest of us.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Democrats Going Crazy

Going through the partisan blogosphere (on either side of the third party system) is sometimes amusing, but usually just pathetic. Wandering into the democratic contribution today I stumbled upon one of the goofiest things I've ever discovered on the web. It is a page promoting a children's book called "Why Mommy is a Democrat" and it has sample pages. This book shows the utter bankruptcy of Democrats in terms of ideas, their conception of keeping people safe it protect them from elephant monsters (Republicans), their conception of economic policy equates to kids sharing their toys (as if this in any way relates to the hard earned fortunes of individuals in the economy at large, not to mention you typically don't pull a gun on a kid to get him to share his "toys"). Both parties are running short of any ideas at all, and this book in only illustrative of the general trend.