Sunday, March 28, 2010

Soccer Dad

Soccer Dad

The wrong vulcan

Posted: 28 Mar 2010 04:09 AM PDT

Spock (to Stonn): "After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing after all as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true." From the Star Trek episode "Amok Time" A number of President Obama's fans in the media used to compare him to Mr. Spock, the logical Vulcan on Star Trek. But maybe they've picked the wrong Vulcan to compare him to. Maybe he's more like Stonn, the Vulcan preferred by Spock's intended, T'Ping. Spock admonished Stonn, warning him that getting what he wants - T'Ping - may not be as pleasing...

Council speak 03/28/10

Posted: 28 Mar 2010 04:07 AM PDT

The council has spoken. Winning Council Submissions First place with 2 1/3 points! - Bookworm Room - Tom Hanks shows stunning ignorance when he claims Americans were engaged in racial genocide against the Japanese during WWII Second place with 2 points - The Razor - Scorched Earth Winning Non-Council Submissions First Place with 1 2/3 Points - Abe Greenwald / Contentions - Outsmarting history Second place with 1 1/3 - Megan McArdle/The Atlantic Online - 8 Predictions for Health Care Congratulations to all the Winners! Plus the latest National Journal bloggers poll is up. Several Watcher's Council members participated and...

Touch of grey

Posted: 28 Mar 2010 03:47 AM PDT

In the U.S. when you're on public transportation there's a sign to the effect of "Please reserve these seats for the elderly and the disabled." In Israel the comparable sign is: Effectively it means "Get up for the elderly." It is taken from the Torah (Bible.) I'm happy to say that Israelis take it quite seriously. On my last day in Israel, my daughter and I were headed to Yerushalayim. My father took us to Tzomet Shimshon (Shimshon Junction) to get a bus. We got on and moved to the middle of the bus. At which point a Chayelet (female...

Friday, March 26, 2010

Soccer Dad

Soccer Dad

Submitted 032610

Posted: 26 Mar 2010 04:01 AM PDT

This week's Watcher's council nominations are up: Council Submissions Mere Rhetoric - Mearsheimer: Let's Mainstream Anti-Israel Lies So "Support For The Jewish State" Will "Evaporate The Colossus of Rhodey - Does anyone recall the nets and papers headlining the worst of anti-war protests? Bookworm Room - Tom Hanks shows stunning ignorance when he claims Americans were engaged in racial genocide against the Japanese during WWII The Provocateur - Health Care Reform a State's Rights Issue Right Truth - Justified The Razor - Scorched Earth American Digest - Goodbye to the Way We Were Rhmes with Right - Secret Service Engages...

Netanyahu's response

Posted: 26 Mar 2010 03:35 AM PDT

The New York Times reports about Prime Minister Netanyahu's response to American demands. Mr. Netanyahu has brought up several possible gestures, including restrictions on Israeli troop activities in the West Bank, the freeing of Palestinian prisoners, some latitude for reconstruction in Gaza and further efforts to bolster the Palestinian economy. The Americans have welcomed those gestures. The White House press secretary, Robert Gibbs, said Thursday, "We're making progress on important issues." But building in Jerusalem remains the sticking point. Mr. Netanyahu is expected to meet on Friday with his top seven cabinet ministers to begin to form his response. It...

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Soccer Dad

Soccer Dad

Petraeus: perry's oh for three

Posted: 25 Mar 2010 04:31 AM PDT

While it's clear that the administration wishes to foster the perception that Israel is a liability to American interests and the anti-Israel crowd is all too happy to feed that, it's not so clear that the source of this perception agrees. The American Spectator asked General Petraeus about his assessment to the Senate Armed Services Committee and he responded. First he dismissed the widely quoted story by Mark Perry: But on Wednesday, Petraeus poured cold water on the controversy, explaining in detail why "all three items...were wrong, frankly." Further: In addition, he explained that the quote that bloggers attributed to...

Biden's knee-slapper

Posted: 25 Mar 2010 04:13 AM PDT

Stand up comedian: Vice President Biden (h/t The Muqata last week): "I just got back from five days in the Middle East," Biden said. "I love to travel, but it's great to be back to a place where a boom in housing construction is actually a good thing," he said. Israel announced during Biden's visit that it had approved construction of 1,600 homes in East Jerusalem, a move which the U.S. called an "insult" due to its timing. (Haaretz) Israelly Cool observed: That's really funny, especially to those who have lost their homes and may stand to lose their homes...

"Ideological and vindictive"

Posted: 25 Mar 2010 04:03 AM PDT

via memeorandum Jackson Diehl, not someone I consider to be pro-Israel, nonetheless acknowledges what the administration is doing: U.S. pressure on Netanyahu will be needed if the peace process ever reaches the point where the genuinely contentious issues, like Palestinian refugees or the exact territorial tradeoffs, are on the table. But instead of waiting for that moment and pushing Netanyahu on a point where he might be vulnerable to domestic challenge, Obama picked a fight over something that virtually all Israelis agree on, and before serious discussions have even begun. As the veteran Middle East analyst Robert Malley put it...

Another diplomatic incident

Posted: 25 Mar 2010 03:06 AM PDT

In the wake of a vote condemning the Turkish genocide of Armenians, Turkey has recalled its ambassador to the United States. The conditions for the ambassador's return? Davutoglu set two conditions for Tan's return: The administration and Congress must show they will refrain from deciding what he called "our history," and the countries "should agree to develop our strategic alliance," he said. Why should we care? As a Muslim NATO member and a close U.S. ally, Turkey is crucial to efforts to stabilize Afghanistan and develop Iraq. President Obama visited the country almost a year ago and has broken a...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Soccer Dad

Soccer Dad

Sometimes anti-israel is anti-israel

Posted: 24 Mar 2010 04:13 AM PDT

Robert Wright sets up many straw men and knocks them down in Against pro-Israel. He cynically lists "symptoms" of being anti-Israel. Symptom no. 1: Believing that Israel shouldn't build more settlements in East Jerusalem. President Obama holds this belief, and that seems to be the reason that Gary Bauer, who sought the Republican presidential nomination in 2000, deems Obama's administration "the most anti-Israel administration in U.S. history." Bauer notes that the East Jerusalem settlements are "entirely within the city of Jerusalem" and that Jerusalem is "the capital of Israel." That's artful wording, but it doesn't change the fact that East...

Musical <strike>monday</strike> wednesday #135

Posted: 24 Mar 2010 03:46 AM PDT

Elie and I alternated hosting Musical Monday every week - though this is the last one until April 12 due to Passover. This week is a bit different. First of all I haven't finished it yet. But the way Musical Monday works is that the players figure out the individual songs and identify a common theme. But, in a sense, this week's MM, the process then works backwards. Does that help at all? For the answers to Musical Monday #134 check here. 1) And Wendy's stealing clothes from Marks And Sparks. 2) Just promise me this: that you'll give me...

Forget ObamaCare--Israel Will Be A Big Issue In 2010 Elections

Posted: 24 Mar 2010 01:37 AM PDT

Support for Israel, and its implications for US foreign policy, is already emerging as an issue in the upcoming Congressional races shaping up this year. Republicans have an easier time backing Israel as part of their criticism of Obama's foreign policy in general and towards Iran in particular. Not so Democrats, who while they like to claim to be solid friends of Israel, must also deal with the increasingly vocal group among them that say pressure on Israel is the way towards peace.That might be reflected in last month's Gallup poll:Over the last five years, support for Israel has increased slightly...