Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Warm Thoughts on the Intolerant Hypocrisy of Moral Relativism

By Garry J. Moes

The outlawing of the Ten Commandments in recent years seems to have led to some wonderful economies of scale in the area of sinning. The number of serious transgressions has been reduced to approximately three, far below the 600-plus possible violations of biblical law which were summarized some millennia ago into the familiar ten entries on the two tablets of stone now banned from courtrooms, schools and most public places.

One of the three is fairly new and reflects the ascendency of a new god (goddess?). "Warming" of the deity "Globe" is now among the highest of absolute offenses, but, thankfully, the unnatural acts which constitute this great evil seem to be largely limited at this time to only the most corrupt of pervert societies: advanced capitalist realms. It used to be that warmness was viewed in a positive light. We liked being around people with "warm" personalities. We appreciated a "warm" welcome. Couldn’t sleep? A "warm" cup of milk did the trick. Anything that gave us "warm" and fuzzy feelings was a good thing. But apparently the new god(dess) reacts adversely to being warmed, and to avoid her/its/his wrath and the certain catastrophes which follow thereupon, we must educate ourselves and our children, especially our children, to refrain from the sin of warming at all costs — and the costs may be staggering.

A second, more traditional, sin among the three remaining transgressions is Intolerance (and its cousin Racism), but, again thankfully, this is now a sin only on a limited scale; indeed, it cannot even be regarded as a sin unless one is intolerant of tolerance (i.e., a liberal view of life). That is to say, only people with the aforementioned outmoded traditional values based on the earlier recognized 600-plus sins are capable of intolerance. Intolerance by those blessed with a sense of liberality toward all things is really quite a virtue. This is tricky. Many people in the current transitional period have become very confused about when tolerance and intolerance are sinful and which targets are legitimate, so it is important always to consult the true experts, the elite arbiters of the new moral paradigms (such as certain movie stars). If you can’t understand what they are saying, just follow their example and you probably can’t go wrong.

Which brings us to the third remaining sin. This is perhaps as old as mankind and is pretty much the one remaining universally acknowledged human disposition that could be regarded as conventional iniquity. It is Hypocrisy — also known as The Double Standard. You can hear it discussed ... and soundly condemned ... almost every day, particularly in political discourse. It is highly bipartisan. You can see this great sin — and the denunciation of it — on both sides of the aisle.

It used to have a more religious tone to it. I remember long ago that when an evangelistically minded Christian, for example, would try to invite one of the traditional types of sinners to get right with God, the almost inevitable objection by the sinner would be that he wanted nothing to do with God because the Church was full of hypocrites. Someone came up with a clever retort that since no sinner ever gets into heaven and thus there could be no hypocrites there, it would make good sense to get right with God and thus be assured of going to that great hypocrite-free zone in the sky one day.

Nowadays, The Double Standard has a more generic or secular aspect. But that has not by any means diminished its character as a widely recognized sin.

We submit, however, that the charge of Hypocrisy, as applied today, is frequently a cop-out and misses the mark. To grasp this, one must understand the basic definition or character of hypocrisy. Hypocrisy is (A) a show or expression of feelings or beliefs that one (B) does not actually hold or possess. To put it simply, it is "saying one thing" (usually something good and virtuous) and "doing another thing" (usually something bad or unvirtuous). The hypocrite, to state it in yet another familiar way, does not "practice what he preaches."

If you think about this for a minute, its means that there are always two moral aspects to the hypocrite which must be examined. On one hand there is the moral quality of (A) what he says, or shows, or expresses in public. On the other hand, one must examine the moral quality of (B) his actual or true hidden position. The problem with making a charge of hypocrisy is that one can easily fail to examine either of these causal positions and simply expose their combined effect, which we label hypocrisy if A and B are inconsistent with one another. The accused may then simply deny the hypocrisy charge or return it and never be forced to deal with the moral character of its underlying components. Furthermore, while no one likes to be accused of sin, being accused of hypocrisy is perhaps not the worse thing that could happen to oneself; after all, one can’t actually be fined or imprisoned or put to death for being a hypocrite.

Let’s consider an example so see why charges of hypocrisy are often the easy way out of a moral conundrum and rarely lead to corrected behavior.

One of the most prolific levelers of hypocrisy charges today is that Great American Sean Hannity, a truly guileless fellow who is almost always right in assessing the moral positions of his antagonists, the Liberals. Perhaps he is so prone to bring this charge because the sin is so fantastically ubiquitous among liberals. He is almost always right in recognizing hypocrisy when he sees it, but he tends to dwell incessantly (dare I say, ad nauseam) on the apparent hypocrisy and often fails to deal conclusively with the deeper sins of the hypocrite, the component polar positions (A and B) which combine to give rise to this sin of effect.

One of Mr. Hannity’s favorite targets of late, for obvious and wholly appropriate reasons, has been Al Gore, the new high priest of the deity Globe ... the thunderous prophet and revelator of the very un-chic new sin of warming. Mr. Hannity and others have carefully followed Mr. Gore’s travel and living habits and found that the way he lives and works and travels is grossly inconsistent with the way he says the rest of us should live and work and travel if we are to avoid the new sin of warming Globe. Mr. Gore’s critics seem, for sure, to have nailed him to the wall on the sin of hypocrisy, the double standard, inconsistency writ large. But few, including Mr. Hannity, have gone deeper to examine the moral realities of either Mr. Gore’s preachments or his behaviors, the constituent components of his hypocrisy. Yet this is quite possible to do. It has been done, thankfully, by some dedicated journalists (see the results of their in-depth investigation, for example, elsewhere on this blog). The result of this examination is much more important and useful than taking the easy way out with a charge of hypocrisy. It shows that Mr. Gore is a liar and a fraud and that the mathematical al-gore-isms and computer models he touts in support of his divine science (what he preaches) are just plain wrong. And because he advances falsehoods, he himself is a moral wrongdoer. (Oops, pardon me. I forgot there for a moment that lying, fraud and deception are among those old-timey "sins" that are no longer recognized as unacceptable.) One could, on the other hand, examine the morality of his actual personal behavior and find that his rich lifestyle is perfectly moral (again, pardon the appeal to the out-dated notion of moral standards). These types of examinations would do much more for creating a better (oops, sorry, another moral judgment?) world than making easy charges of hypocrisy. But because few have taken the trouble to do the hard moral legwork, Mr. Gore goes on his merry way of deceiving the world and potentially destroying it with misplaced policy proposals.

Lest it be thought that I have been too hard of a moral ally like Sean Hannity, let me make you another case involving the other side of the philosophical aisle.

Liberal secularists are very found of charging conservative Christians of hypocrisy on the issue of the sanctity of life. "They say they are pro-life but they won't lift a figure to end capital punishment, gun violence or war. They're such hypocrites," the typical charge says. "Such a blantant double standard. Cluck. Cluck. Tsk. Tsk."

By leveling this mindless hypocrisy charge and pointing out a seeming inconsistency, the liberals smugly believe they have won the moral ground: The Rightwingers are hypocritical; they're positions must therefore be dismissed. End of discussion.

But if the accusers were to do the hard legwork of moral investigation of the Christian practice and preaching, they would find no hypocrisy at all, no inconsistency. That's because the true underlying Christian position argues only the sacredness of some kinds of life and the damnation/forfeiture of other kinds of life. Innocent life is sacred and worthy of protection as an inalienable right. Guilty life is not inalienable and must be forfeit when its owner has deprived a innocent person of his or her sacred life (sacred in that it is God-given and thus inalienable). Murderers and those who take life through unjust war or aggression have no such inalienable right to life. That is the Christian position and taking the life of such persons through the behaviors of capital punishment, just war and appropriate police action is entirely consistent with the Christian profession regarding life.

But to reach that understanding one has to carefully study the Christian's "A" -- his stated position -- and his "B" -- his actions or behaviors -- from a moral standpoint. That's hard and often devastating work. It is much easier to claim moral superiority and victory by spewing out a simplistic charge of hypocrisy and never examining the premises of the hypocrisy equation.

To do in-depth moral evaluation, however, leads inescapably to making absolute moral judgments, something that has been rendered all but impossible in light of the new reality that there are virtually no sins left. In fact, the present moral relativity explains why the only available sin with which to charge one’s enemy is hypocrisy. If neither one’s public expression (A) nor one’s hidden agenda (B) can be labeled right or wrong, all that is left to charge is that these two positions are inconsistent with one another. And inconsistency can be considered morally wrong only if it has the nature of an absolute.

This is the weird world in which libertarians live. Listen to another commentator who is fond of citing the double standard, Bill O’Reilly. He is always quick to tell his viewers and listeners that he couldn’t care less what sodomites, for example, do or believe. "What they do is they’re business," he predictably bloviates with regard to this or most other societal situations he addresses. But he has no trouble at all leveling a charge of hypocrisy in this or that situation, and that alone is enough for him to come to a moral conclusion, since hypocrisy is one of the few moral absolutes left in this world (the other two being the aforementioned global warming and one-directional intolerance).

The upshot of it all is that the moral relativists have painted themselves into an uncomfortable and potentially deadly corner, for no one can survive long in a world where all behaviors are acceptable, save a tiny handful of insipid comportments like hypocrisy which gain moral gravitas only by screeching about them.

Gracious me, but moral relativists are so intolerably hypocritical! Which would be funny if it weren’t for the fact that a major segment of the rest of the world is inhabited by some rabidly determined absolutists whose moral compass points only south. And because it is sin to be intolerant of these folks, there is little we can do to stop them, unless, of course an angry Globe destroys us all first.

Monday, March 19, 2007

What Must Be Done: Thoughts on the 4th Anniversary of the Current Hostilities in Iraq

By Garry J. Moes

If there was any good in the Islamic attack on the United States on September 11, 2001 (and many good and noble things did happen on and around that day), one of the highest was this: for one brief, glorious moment, Americans and much of the rest of the world East and West knew what had to be done.

For more than 30 years before that fateful day, the maniacs of imperialist Islam had been on the attack, mostly with impunity. Airliners were hijacked and blown out of the sky. Cruise liners were commandeered and old men in wheelchairs were thrown overboard. International games were disrupted and athletes murdered. Journalists, ambassadors, embassy workers, businessmen and tourists were kidnapped, held captive for months on end, and/or murdered. Novelists were marked for death and were forced into years of seclusion. Barracks, airbases and warships were bombed, and soldiers, marines, airmen and sailors were slaughtered. Servicemen on humanitarian missions were brutalized, murdered, and burned and their corpses were dragged through the streets. Embassies abroad were blown up and skyscrapers at home were shaken. Suicide bombers quietly penetrated supermarkets, cafes, buses, night clubs and schools, bloodying the landscape with the dismembered bodies of ordinary people living their ordinary lives. Jihadist organizations with nothing but violence on their programs proliferated, while some of their leaders won Nobel peace prizes. Whole nations were subverted into terrorist states. Literally thousands of such incidents could be cited.

Save for a few successful precision air raids (President Ronald Reagan's retaliatory strike on Libya) and some ill-fated rescue attempts (President Jimmy Carter's helicopter fiasco in the Iranian desert) and off-target retaliations (President Bill Clinton's inept missile attack on an aspirin factory) over the years, America responded to the incessant succession of Muslim attacks with hand-wringing, head shaking, regrets, sadness, resignation and apathy.

But on September 11, 2001, and for a brief season thereafter, that all changed. Americans and much of a sympathetic world saw with great moral clarity what had to be done. This clarity was distilled in President George W. Bush, a plain-spoken man who almost instantly put it forth in a sweeping Doctrine that promised a dark destiny for all individuals, organizations, enterprises and nations whose purposes were to bring the world to heel through terror.

The impulse to do what had to be done was so powerful and instinctively clear that few at the time heard the president's warning that the civilized world's necessity would be a struggle spanning decades and generations. Few thought to consider whether what had to be done could, in fact, feasibly be done at all -- whether the armies of civilized nations could ever secure a victory against a million fanatics making a million unpredictable and undetectable little but deadly forays at any moment at any place. It is likely that few contemplated, beyond their instincts, the nuances or harsh future realities that would accompany the doing of what we knew in our hearts (but not so much in our heads) had to be done.

The breathtaking truth we knew on 9/11 was that what had to be done was this: We must return to war and stay at war for as long as this implacable enemy insists on pursuing its vicious vision of subjecting ("Islam" means "submission") the world to the demands of Allah and rule by his people. This pan-Islamic vision has always existed among the Mohammedans, who have, ironically, almost constantly warred among themselves over which of their religious factions or dynasties will control and implement the vision.

And so this nation went back to war. I say "went back" because it had launched a major campaign in this war just over a decade earlier when the patriarch of the Bush dynasty saw what had to be done in the face of a bold move by one of the most brazen of the modern antagonists to establish a dominant position in the renewal of the pan-Islamist imperialistic vision, namely Saddam Hussein. Whether President George H. W. Bush (the elder) had a full understanding of the need to stand against this historic broad Islamist vision is unclear; he spoke only of the need for a "new world order" of powers partnered under the United Nations to stand against international aggression. (His son seemed to labor under a less grandiose and morally simpler assumption; namely, that any person, organization or nation who uses terror to accomplish any end must be stopped by any reasonable means necessary.) Not long after Bush the Elder left office, there was a blatant terrorist attack on our home soil, the first in 50 years. The enemy attempted to bring down one of the centers of our economic life, the World Trade Center, in 1993. But our new playboy president at the time was too busy with his perversions and the country was having too much fun mimicking or watching the antics of President Goodtime Charlie to give the attack a second thought.

The renewed campaigns which began shortly after 9/11 proved spectacularly successful. Within weeks of the start of retaliatory hostilities on two fronts, two enemy regimes were easily toppled. In the case of Iraq, the conquest was so swift that our forces outpaced their own supply lines occasionally. The leaders of the fallen regimes and many of their organizational allies and terror masterminds fled for the safety of spider holes, caves and cross-border sanctuaries. Successful generals retired, and one aircraft-carrier captain allowed his ship to be festooned with a banner declaring "Mission Accomplished" as his commander-in-chief landed a jet on deck to offer thanks to his accomplished warriors. Though many later scoffed at that slogan, the fact was that the mission of the campaigns to which the slogan applied had indeed been accomplished.

What many failed to realize at the time was the fact that new campaigns were about to be launched by the enemy. There seems to be evidence that our war planners had not fully prepared for this fact. The regime changes in Afghanistan and Iraq had created two more "Israels," and the hit-and-run terrorists who had always plagued the original Israel now took their tactics to the new fronts.

But by now, the memories of that fateful day in 2001 had begun to fade among the Western masses whose earlier instincts had led them to pursue what had to be done. Patriotic country singer Darryl Worley wondered in song: "Have you forgotten how it felt that day?" Perhaps one of the reasons the memories had faded can be found in the words of that very question. We had been remembering for a time how we "felt" on that day, when what we should have been remembering were the cold, hard facts about what led to that day. It is natural for most normal people in the West to find it hard to sustain powerful emotions for a long period of time -- unlike the enemy, whose anger and commitment never seem to fade. We, the people of a rational civilization, must understand historical and ontological realities if we are to succeed in the defense of our world and way of life. The problem is that in recent generations, owing to our crumbling educational system and moral/philosophical foundations, we are quickly losing our ability to reason, especially to morally reason, and to see clearly what has to be done. We may respond to our latent instincts for a time, but these are not enough to see us through to the necessary end in the long haul.

And so, like the circus-goers of ancient Rome, we have turned our attention to what furthers our enjoyments: the fun of singing competitions and flesh-flashing dance contests, acquiring the latest gadgets and downloading music and zippy ringtones to them, fixating on the "tragic" death or head-shaving meltdowns of celebrity harlots and the paternity of their offspring, awarding gold statuettes to goofball former politicians turned pseudo-scientists, endlessly debating sexy social issues which once were sensibly undebatable, following virtually every hedonistic opportunity available to us -- the very corruptions which lead our enemies to so deeply despise us.

Our lagging interest in pursuing what has to be done is exacerbated by the devilish efforts of some of our own number and of countries abroad who had been strategically silent in the instinctive moments following 9/11 but who had never forgotten what the madman Hitler-Bush had pledged to do back then. These sanity-challenged anarchists and revolutionaries, and their useful idiots in major political parties, realized at the time that what the rest of us knew had to be done could only be done through the leadership of the world's only remaining superpower, a global military-industrialist power which they hate with a burning passion. Many of these secretly or openly work to stop us from doing what must be done and would be delighted to see our enemy succeed against us -- forgetting, of course, that the enemy will also come for them. They desperately need to see the 4,000-year-old Hebrew-Christian civilization fall, because they cannot abide its claims on their lives. The problem is that if this civilization falls, all the world will be forced to abide the claims of a barbaric system of religious and societal horrors too terrible to contemplate. Too terrible to contemplate...but very easy to examine, for this system has operated in plain view for centuries and does so still in myriad and diverse places in our contemporary world. Still its civilized rival, incredibly, is viewed by some in the West as the greater terror.

The evident horrors of today's Islam are only the modern manifestations of a centuries-old imperialistic holy war by the practitioners of a malevolent and malicious religion sworn, bound and determined to persevere till all the world falls under the dominion of their "merciful" god.

"History confirms with great clarity that Muslims, beginning with Muhammad, launched their conquest of Christendom one-thousand years before the Europeans responded rather feebly with their Crusades. Yet today, Muslim propagandists want the world to believe that the West stole Islamic lands and that Christians alone are imperialistic. This mindset is used to fool fools into believing that Muslims fight Christians because Christians have fought Muslims. Those who deceive don’t want you to know that Christians were victims, not villains in this affair or that Islam alone is why Muslims kill," writes one chronicler of this reign of terror.

"And yet, despite all of the evidence to the contrary, Islam is presented as innocent and passive. The religion is seldom if ever held accountable for the terrorism it inspires. Even when so-called experts discuss terror in the context of the religion they universally apply the qualifier 'radical' to Islam, suggesting that a corrupted form of the doctrine is to blame for its carnage when the opposite is true. But to have access to the media and to sell books one must be willing to lie. This suicidal pathology is born out of Socialist Secular Humanism and its campaign against Christian values.

And make no mistake: the present opposition to any Western war on Islamism is a "suicidal pathology." In the face of the certain destruction which the do-nothing position will bring about, the opposition advocates doing nothing. To these opponents -- from the terminally naive to the political opportunists to the flat-out traitors who work for our destruction -- the thing that must be done is nothing. For the traitors, Western capitulation is a desired strategy -- suicidal and pathological though it may be. The naive and the opportunists, if they consider at all the practice of terrorism in the 40 years before 9/11, apparently believe that the thing that must be done is simply to endure the troublesomeness of it all. We survived the nettlesome irritation of terror before; we can survive it some more, miserable as things may be from time to time.

But they have forgotten. They have forgotten 9/11, the day we knew for a moment what really, truly had to be done. For that moment, we knew this was more than nettlesome irritation; this had the nature of history's ultimate showdown.

Indeed, that is how the enemy sees it. The visionary leaders of of al Qaeda and Iran have made it repeatedly and abundantly clear: a conflagration must occur to usher in history's climax -- the eternal golden age of Islamic triumphalism -- and they are sworn to fulfill their perceived destinies to bring it to pass in their (our) lifetimes. This is why the present opposition to the war is so utterly and profoundly and stupidly wrong.

To those who argue that the "war against terror" may be necessary but the "war in Iraq" is not, we submit again that this is a terminal case of ignorance. Whatever rationale may have been given by the American administration and its allies four years ago for returning to the Iraq theater, the place of Iraq in the enemy's grand understanding of history's progress and end must be considered. At the heart of the pan-Islamic vision for the world is the restoration of the caliphate -- abandoned by the corrupt Ottoman Turks in 1924 and seemingly lost for good with the defeat of the Axis Powers, which included the (by then disheveled) Ottoman Empire, in World War II. For certain factions within Islam, Iraq is central to the vision. (Thankfully, this is and always has been a factious matter within Islam and the internecine struggles on such issues have frequently weakened the movement from within. One of the West's most promising strategies would be to exploit this factionalism in every way possible. Saddam's aggressions were more than bravado but his effort to position himself in the forefront of the coming Islamic world dominion, and it is why he could not capitulate to the pre-war demands of the West despite the impossibility of his situation.)

The tactics now being employed by the Democrats in the U.S. Congress completely ignore the centrality of Iraq in the pan-Islamic vision, and their shamefulness is outweighed only by their dangerousness. For if the present West-accommodating Iraqi regime or some similar successor of it falls, there will be little to stand in the way of a vast renewal of the imperial push of greater Islam. Again, whatever rationale may have been publicly given for U.S. action in Iraq, our presence in the strategic heart of the Middle East -- if for no other reason than to be a hedge against the vicious rivalry between Arab and Persian Islam, which could produce chaos on a colossal scale -- is critical to our national interests and the peace and safety of the world.

The opportunistic Democrats have been idiotically clear on what they think should not be done, despite the realities of the present world and the remembrance of their own instincts on 9/11 of what had to be done. To them we ask, "What do you propose to do to accomplish what still must be done?"

"Nothing" is not good enough. A pox on your house if you allow your thirst for partisan power to so blind yourself to what you must do that our national house and the civilization that it still barely nurtures is forced to fall to the House of Islam.

Give Eco-Messiah a Little Carbon Credit

By Mark Steyn

Stop me if you've heard this before, but the other day the Rev. Al Gore declared that "climate change" was "the most important moral, ethical, spiritual and political issue humankind has ever faced.'' Ever. I believe that was the same day it was revealed that George W. Bush's ranch in Texas is more environmentally friendly than the Gore mansion in Tennessee. According to the Nashville Electric Service, the Eco-Messiah's house uses 20 times more electricity than the average American home. The average household consumes 10,656 kilowatt-hours. In 2006, the Gores wolfed down nearly 221,000 kilowatt-hours.

Two hundred twenty-one thousand kilowatt-hours? What's he doing in there? Clamping Tipper to the electrodes and zapping her across the rec room every night? No, no, don't worry. Al's massive energy consumption is due entirely to his concern about the way we're depleting the Earth's resources. When I say "we," I don't mean Al, of course. I mean you -- yes, you, Earl Schlub, in the basement apartment at 29 Elm St. You're irresponsibly depleting the Earth's resources by using that electric washer when you could be down by the river with the native women beating your loin cloth dry on the rock while singing traditional village work chants all morning long.

But up at the Gore mansion -- the Nashville Electric Service's own personal gold mine, the shining Cathedral of St. Al, Tennessee's very own Palace of Versal -- the Reverend Al is being far more environmentally responsible. As his spokesperson attempted to argue, his high energy usage derives from his brave calls for low energy usage. He's burning up all that electricity by sending out faxes every couple of minutes urging you to use less electricity.

Also he buys -- and if you're a practicing Ecopalyptic please prostrate yourself before the Recycling Bin and make the sign of the HDPE -- Al buys "carbon offsets," or "carbon credits." Or, as his spokesperson Kalee Kreider put it (and, incidentally, speaking through a spokesperson is another way Al dramatically reduces his own emissions), the Gores "also do the carbon emissions offset."

They do the Carbon Emissions Offset? What is that -- a '60s dance craze? No, it's way hotter. I mean, cooler. All the movie stars are doing it. In fact, this year's Oscar goodie-bag that all the nominees get included a year's worth of carbon offsets. Totally free. So even the stars' offsets are offset. No wonder that, when they're off the set, they all do the offset. Look at Leonardo DiCaprio: He's loaded with 'em, and the chicks think he's totally eco-cool. Tall and tan and young and lovely, the boy with carbon offsets goes walking and when he passes each one he passes goes aaaiiieeeeeeeee!

How do "carbon offsets" work? Well, let's say you're a former vice president and you want to reduce your "carbon footprint," but the gorgeous go-go Gore gals are using the hair dryer every night. So you go to a carbon-credits firm and pay some money and they'll find a way of getting somebody on the other side of the planet to reduce his emissions and the net result will be "carbon neutral."

It's like in Henry VIII's day. He'd be planning a big ox roast and piling on the calories but he'd give a groat to a starving peasant to carry on starving for another day and the result would be calorie-neutral.

So in the Reverend Al's case it doesn't matter that he's lit up like Times Square on V-E Day. Because he's paid for his extravagant emissions. He has a carbon-offset trader in an environmentally friendly carbon-credits office suite who buys "carbon offsets" for Al from, say, a terrorist mastermind in a cave in the Pakistani tribal lands who's dramatically reduced his energy usage mainly because every time he powers up his cell phone or laptop a light goes on in Washington and an unmanned drone starts heading his way. So, aside from a basic cable subscription to cheer himself up watching U.S. senators talking about "exit strategies" on CNN 24/7, the terrorist mastermind doesn't deplete a lot of resources. Which means Tipper can watch Al give a speech on a widescreen plasma TV, where Al looks almost as wide as in life, and she doesn't have to feel guilty because it all comes out . . . carbon-neutral!

And, in fact, in the Reverend Al's case it's even better than that. Al buys his carbon offsets from Generation Investment Management LLP, which is "an independent, private, owner-managed partnership established in 2004 and with offices in London and Washington, D.C.," that, for a fee, will invest your money in "high-quality companies at attractive prices that will deliver superior long-term investment returns." Generation is a tax-exempt U.S. 501(c)3. And who's the chairman and founding partner? Al Gore.

So Al can buy his carbon offsets from himself. Better yet, he can buy them with the money he gets from his long-time relationship with Occidental Petroleum. See how easy it is to be carbon-neutral? All you have do is own a gazillion stocks in Big Oil, start an eco-stockbroking firm to make eco-friendly investments, use a small portion of your oil company's profits to buy some tax-deductible carbon offsets from your own investment firm, and you too can save the planet while making money and leaving a carbon footprint roughly the size of Godzilla's at the start of the movie when they're all standing around in the little toe wondering what the strange depression in the landscape is.

A couple of days before the Oscars, the Reverend Al gave a sell-out performance at the University of Toronto. "From my perspective, it is a form of religion," said Bruce Crofts of the East Toronto Climate Action Group, who compared the former vice president to Jesus Christ, both men being (as the Globe And Mail put it) "great leaders who stepped forward when called upon by circumstance." Unlike Christ, the Eco-Messiah cannot yet walk on water, but then, neither can the polar bears. However, only Al can survey the melting ice caps and turn water into whine. One lady unable to land a ticket frantically begged the university for an audience with His Goriness. As the National Post reported, "Her daughter hadn't been able to sleep since seeing An Inconvenient Truth. She claimed that seeing Mr. Gore in person might make her daughter feel better." Well, it worked for Leonardo DiCaprio.

Are eco-celebrities buying ridiculousness-emissions credits from exhausted run-of-the-mill celebrities like Paris, Britney and Anna Nicole? Ah, well. The Eco-Messiah sternly talks up the old Nazi comparisons: What we're facing is an "ecological Holocaust, and "the evidence of an ecological Kristallnacht is as clear as the sound of glass shattering in Berlin."

That 221,000 kilowatt-hours might suggest that, if this is the ecological Holocaust, Gore's pad is Auschwitz. But, as his spokesperson would no doubt argue, when you're faced with ecological Holocausts and ecological Kristallnachts, sometimes the only way to bring it to an end is with an ecological Hiroshima. The Gore electric bill is the eco-atom bomb: You have to light up the world in order to save it.

©Mark Steyn 2007

"Shooter" a Self-inflicted Wound

By Graham H. Moes
Graybrook Institute Film Critic

Don’t believe the rumors... It is all about oil, my friends.

Not only do we invade other countries for it, we slaughter whole villages and bury their bodies under the pipeline.

I know because I saw it in Shooter.

I won’t even bother with the plot. Let’s just jump right in.

In Shooter, America is baaaad. So bad that even the handful of good guys left in government are powerless to stop the vast majority of baaaad ones running it layer upon layer upon layer (with brandy snifter in hand, of course.)

In Shooter, there are no Republicans or Democrats, only guys trying to make a quick buck. In fact, any U.S. senator -- who looks suspiciously more Republican than Democrat -- will admit that to your face, with a smile and a puff of cigar smoke, because you can’t do a thing about it, little man.

In Shooter, U.S. soldiers get left behind at the first sign of trouble. By their commanding officers, who will set up large, illegal, undetectable military bases in foreign countries at a phone call from those Republican-looking senators and their Haliburton pals.

In Shooter, you can tell the bad guys by their American flag lapel pins, and the good guys by their Che Guevara T-shirts.

In Shooter, you have a film to heal the long and unfortunate rift between Hollywood and Iran caused by 300.

In Shooter, you have a film Hugo Chavez will adore.... You have a film in which Chavez-adoring Danny Glover stars...patriotism is for suckers who should know better, a weakness acknowledged reluctantly, like alcoholism...and even rednecky, good-old-boy gun nuts from the deep south gloat like Rosie O’Donnell about finding no WMDs in Iraq.... Seriously folks, it’s that bad.

Danny Glover was a dead giveaway, of course, but I had hoped it was one of those cases where he was so desperate for work, he was willing to compromise his core beliefs. Like Oliver Stone stooping to direct World Trade Center. But nope.

Oh, and get ready for the payoff line at the end...

Evil Guy: You can’t shoot me. I’m a U.S. Senator!
Hero: Exactly. [BLAMMO!!!]

Burn, baby, burn!!

And when, oh when, are we going to give private security contractors a break? They're popping up as the heavies everywhere lately, despite the fact most are uber-patriots in the real world who deserve to be stars in their own right. (But to see that movie, you'll have to buy my recently completed Iraq actioner, Spartans, currently being politely rejected for its subject matter by all the top producers in Hollywood.)


This review first appeared on rogue wavelength.

Friday, March 16, 2007

The Great Global Warming Swindle

Arm yourself with the truth about the global warming myth. This is a must-see documentary. Click on the other link in my March 15 posting (see left) to access Google Video's higher resolution version.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Great Global Warming Swindle (Google Video Version)

UK Documentary: The Great Global Warming Swindle (Click Here)

A huge segment of the population has begun to take it for granted that climate change is a catastrophe and is a man-made phenomenon. But just as the environmental lobby think they've got our attention, a group of skeptics armed with real science have emerged to slay the whole premise of global warming.

According to a group of scientists brought together by documentary-maker Martin Durkin, if the planet is heating up, it isn't your fault, there's nothing you can do about it, and it is not sinister.

This stunning British program is a must-see documentary that not only blows holes in the phony "science" being touted as proof of a man-made global warming disaster-in-the-making but is also a devastating exposé of the modern green movement and its brazen, colossal and widespread deceptions.

When I was working as a journalist in Europe at the height of the Cold War in the mid-1980s, I regularly monitored Radio Moscow. One of the unmistakeable themes of the dying Communist movement at the time was environmentalism. It was clear that Moscow and its client states were not truly committed to environmental purity. I personally traveled in Eastern Europe at the time and witnessed some of the most ghastly pollution one could imagine. It was clear, rather, that the socialist/communist left badly needed a cause in its last-ditch effort to destroy capitalism, and environmentalism was its convenient lie. This fact is strongly underscored by Greenpeace Founder Patrick Moore in the film.

Watch this 1 hour, 13 minute program and circulate it as widely as possible, especially among young people.