URLs du Jour

2018-09-15

[Amazon Link]

  • At NR, Kevin D. Williamson provides advice to Norm Macdonald: saying certain things can make you Unforgiven. Having lost a decent gig at the Atlantic due to mob outrage, Kevin has wisdom born of experience in these matters.

    Macdonald, a comedian, is being run through the gantlet this week after saying something stupid and ugly. He was disinvited from an appearance on The Tonight Show after making sympathetic comments about celebrities accused of sexual misdeeds (Louis CK) and political thoughtcrime (Roseanne Barr), and then, in the course of apologizing, said that one would have to have Down syndrome to doubt the stories of sexual-harassment or assault victims.

    Yeah.

    You can imagine what happened next: A lot of the same nice people who have quietly cheered the eugenic elimination of two-thirds of the Americans with Down syndrome pretended to be very, very offended on behalf of the third who weren’t put to death by their mothers. If Macdonald had been in Denmark, where 98 percent of those with Down syndrome are put to death, his remarks probably would not have occasioned much of a ripple. People with Down syndrome don’t deserve the insult, and Macdonald is right to apologize for it, but people with Down syndrome, like almost everybody else walking the Earth, have bigger problems than Norm Macdonald.

    Kevin's further advice: When you say something stupid, apologize. Then shut up.


  • I've become, God help me, a podcast listener. Even if you aren't, may I recommend episode 60 of Jonah Goldberg's The Remnant: Stray cats and screaming chyrons. His guest is Senator Ben Sasse "(R-Corn)", who's much too funny and smart to be a Senator. He makes me want to move back to Nebraska so I could vote for him.

    Among other pearls of wisdom. the Senator recommends this video from Reason TV, What Should Have Happened at the Brett Kavanaugh Hearings. Which I missed linking to last week, but better late than never:


  • At the New York Times, Kara Swisher writes on The Real Google Censorship Scandal.

    This might be bad form, but I can't help but comment on the pic accompanying Ms. Swisher's article:

    [Kara Swisher, swiped from the NYT, sue me]

    "Does holding my glasses this way make me look smart?" It would not be out of place on a parody site illustrating a fake article by a self-important too-serious fake author.

    But anyway: she dismisses Google's anti-conservative bias as a "canard". Which she finds easy enough to do, because her only source is self-debunking Breitbart News.

    So, what's the "real censorship scandal"?

    I’m talking about the fact that Google is considering re-entering the Chinese market after leaving it with a lot of righteous indignation less than a decade ago. Reports say it might once again offer a range of services, including a censored version of its flagship search engine.

    A Google spokeswoman told me that the controversial effort — code-named Dragonfly — is “exploratory,” and that Google is “not close to launching a search product in China.” What’s most interesting is that much of the outrage about the possibility seems to be coming from Google employees who have registered strong objections, rather than from outside.

    Ms. Swisher would like Sergey Brin, who's previously spoken out against state efforts to quash the free flow of information on the Internet, to opine about this. And he should. What's Google gonna do, make a Damore move and fire him?

    But, really, Kara: you can be concerned about both Google's lefty bias and its kowtowing to Communist dictators. You look smart, I'm sure you can manage it.


  • Among the many commenters on the topic, I liked Ed Morrisey at Hot Air: NYT’s Deeply Unsatisfying “Hey, Our Bad” On Haley Hit Piece.

    Some retractions don’t quite cover the offense, even reasonably complete retreats. Such is the case for the nasty hit piece on UN ambassador Nikki Haley from the New York Times, deconstructed by Allahpundit this morning. He also noted the retraction, but it’s worth revisiting, especially in the sequence of events in which it developed.

    Ed notes that while the original article implicitly bashed Nikki Haley, the "corrected" article, failed to mention the name of the UN Ambassador actually in place when the lavish decorating decisions were made: Samantha Power.

    Also worth reading, at Power Line: Why We Hate the Media, Chapter 12,186.


  • At American Consequences, P. J. O'Rourke writes on his recent bout with the Big C: A pain in the….

    I looked death in the face. All right, I didn’t. I glimpsed him from behind.

    Ten years ago, I was diagnosed with cancer – of a highly treatable kind. I was told I had a 95% chance of survival. Which means that, as a drinking, smoking, saturated-fat-hound, exercise-free 60-year-old male – my chance of survival was actually improved by cancer.

    Also, while cancer isn’t usually ridiculous, I had, of all things, a malignant hemorrhoid. What color bracelet do you wear for that? And where do you wear it? And what’s the fund-raising slogan? Maybe that slogan could be sewn in needlepoint on my embarrassing doughnut rear-end pillow.

    For those of us becoming increasingly aware of mortality, P. J.'s article is full of insight, sharp observation, and (of course) humor.