18 May 2003
Quotes for our time (part of a series)

A couple of gems I came across during routine surfing, which I'm happy to pass on to you.

First, Balloon Juice's John Cole, on the call (by Limbaugh and others) to end affirmative action, citing the Jayson Blair scandal as justification:

[T]here may be a number of plausible and well-founded reasons to get rid of affirmative action. This is not one of them. This is a reason to get rid of lazy editors, disinterested middle management, and lazy fact-checkers at the NY Times. Period.

Has anyone yet set up a Howell Raines Countdown Clock?

And SurlyPundit has this to say about exposing college students to Serious Literature:

[I]f you read and examine what you find in the stacks with something resembling a critical eye, you will discover two things. First, reading Coleridge will not make you eloquent unless you have talent to start with, just as a sharpening steel has little effect on a carrot. Second, 90% of everything is crap, but the remainder is worth dying for.

I read a lot of Coleridge in my younger days, and I think I've proven her point. Pass the slaw.

Permalink to this item (posted at 12:01 AM)
30 September 2003
Quote of the week (tie)

Glenn Reynolds, dismissing the sexual crackdown in Indonesia:

I want a country that offers tax breaks for oral sex, not jail time.

What I don't want is to see the inevitable IRS paperwork (Form 69?) one uses to apply for said breaks.

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:37 AM)
Quote of the week (tie)

The Warrior Monk, dismissing a theme from the first movement of Symphony No. 9 by Dmitri Shostakovich:

[I]t sounds like a chorus of lobotomites attempting to whistle the theme song from Hogan's Heroes.

Of course, as the Monk is keenly aware, given the Soviet requirement that composers be guided by the principles of Socialist Realism, it could hardly sound like anything else.

(Update, 3 pm: The Monk would like you, or at least me, to know that it was not his intention to sound dismissive.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:47 AM)
18 November 2003
Quote of the week

Kevin McGehee, on the motivations of Senate Democrats:

Senate Republicans could offer up a bill nationalizing every single industry in America, but if it includes a provision that would put Ronald Reagan's name on the sewage treatment plant in East Endoscopy, Indiana, the Dems would still filibuster it.

East Endoscopy? Must be near Eerie.

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:42 PM)
13 December 2003
Quote of the week

Courtesy of the Pejmeister:

I'm beyond the point of being puzzled as to why choice is supposedly a good ingredient of just about every policy initiative except for education and retirement savings.

Hmmm. "The anti-choice Democrats, who want the financing of your retirement forever tied to a single government program instead of permitting you to make your own decisions...."

Watch for this sound bite next year. Uncredited, of course.

Permalink to this item (posted at 1:47 PM)
19 December 2003
Quote of the week

Tina Brown, for The Washington Post, in a piece called Tough Times for Democrats:

American myths of masculinity draw on the strong, silent archetype — John Wayne and Gary Cooper, later Charles Bronson and Charlton Heston, and more recently the subarticulate comic book action heroes like Sylvester Stallone and, yes, Ahnuld. American portraits of maleness have always favored instinct over intellect, action over reason. Rhett over Ashley. Patton over Marshall. Kirk over Spock. In this context, Bush's frat-boy past and Arnold's "playful" girl groping (never mind that it looks like creepy power-mongering when you really examine it) qualify as youthful expressions of the same testosterone that makes for grown-up action heroes. By comparison, Howard Dean's choleric outbursts look like Elmer Fudd spluttering, and the aristocratic let-us-reason-together authority of John Kerry comes across as lack of muscle tone.

This could almost be an argument for Dick Gephardt — or perhaps Joe Lieberman, if he didn't sound so much like Dr Zoidberg on the late, lamented Futurama.

(Suggested by Stephen Green.)

Addendum, 1:50 pm: At Pyrojection, Lummox JR says:

America was built by men who could think deep thoughts and plan for the future, shoot bears and burglars, raise decent children, treat women with respect, and be loved by their families and communities. These men are aliens to Tina Brown — it makes me wonder, sadly, if her father was any great shakes.

Permalink to this item (posted at 10:53 AM)
30 December 2003
Quote of the week

Cam Edwards, contemplating the Democratic front-runner:

I look at Howard Dean and see a guy who's going to invade Mexico because Taco Bell got his order wrong.

Now that's anger management.

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:13 AM)
22 August 2004
Quote of the week

From Jennifer's History and Stuff:

I'm sure y'all have seen that bumper sticker that says something to the effect of, "It'll be a perfect world when schools have all the money they need and the military needs to hold a bake sale to buy a new jet."

It'll be a better world when military personnel in war zones have all the body armor they need and politicians can only annoy me with their commercials once a week rather than every fifteen minutes.

The latter is probably coming before the former, but thumbs up to both.

(Yeah, I know, I haven't done enough of these to justify the "...of the week" description. You know where the line for refunds starts.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 3:04 PM)
5 October 2004
Quote of the week

Dawn Eden, scourge of Planned Parenthood, evaluating where things stand:

You can tell that Planned Parenthood is scared. They know that their position is morally indefensible, so they resort to relativist blather about "perspective." Meanwhile, they hope no one notices that their own perspective gives them a inside view of a certain orifice — the same one they recommend for "virginal" teen sex.

Which fear perhaps explains their desperate attempts to influence the electorate without jeopardizing their 501(c)(3) status.

(Update, 11:30 am: Someone got to this page with the implausible — to me, anyway — search string "how to end a pregnancy kill the fetus". Sheesh.)

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:28 AM)
11 November 2004
Quote of the week

You really need to read the entirety of Douglas Kern's dismembering of the hapless Eric Engberg at Tech Central Station, but the choicest bit comes at the point where Engberg complains that bloggers and such like don't have access to the "experts" employed by Big Media, to which Kern replies:

What were you [specifically, Slate] thinking — publishing information without access to the cautions being provided by the [National Election] pool's experts? That's halfway to being a hate crime. Why, journalism without expert gatekeepers is like ice cream without Worcestershire sauce.

I anticipate a rocky road for big-name journos over the next few years.

Permalink to this item (posted at 10:48 AM)
29 January 2005
Quote of the week

Andrea Harris, Victory Soap:

I must admit one reason I ceased to want to have anything to do with the Democratic Party was so I wouldn't have to hear the latest sob story about unaffordable medicine from people with $100-a-month cable bills.

By coincidence, $100 will buy one month of my blood-pressure meds.

Permalink to this item (posted at 3:38 PM)
9 June 2005
Quote of the week

Chase McInerney, on the newer, svelter Ronald McDonald:

Maybe, just maybe, it's not the responsibility of a burger-joint mascot to dissuade kids from patronizing his boss' restaurants. After all, our hard-working hookers are under no obligation to dispense penicillin.

Okay, it's not precisely the same dynamic, but it sounds good.

Permalink to this item (posted at 6:07 PM)
14 July 2005
Quote of the week

Just about any paragraph in this piece by Jen, though at the moment, for perhaps obvious reasons, I liked this one best:

The meaning of life is not in always being sure of where you're going, but rather in never failing to appreciate the journey.

If you're not going somewhere, have your vital signs checked. You have a journey, even when you have no clue as to the destination.

Permalink to this item (posted at 7:33 AM)
12 August 2005
Quote of the week

Lots of contenders this week, but this one raises the eyebrows to peak level. From Francis W. Porretto:

Customer-assembled furniture has destroyed more domestic evenings than toddler soccer, medical insurance options, and menstruation combined.

Don't I know it.

Permalink to this item (posted at 10:49 AM)
3 September 2005
Quote of the week

Almost any paragraph from this piece by Julie R. Neidlinger, though the one I want to single out is this one:

Some of the people you see on TV are survivors and some are victims. The difference is in their head and is easily seen in how they react. The survivors will naturally survive. The victims will never forgive whoever happens to be on their usual list of suspects to blame, and their lives will be permanently stuck on page Hurricane Katrina as an excuse for their future until the day they die. They won't survive this, though they will live.

Truer words have ne'er been spoken.