A Menagerie of Outspoken Opinions on Science, World Politics, and Geek Culture

Monday, August 30, 2004

Monday Linkfest

This week's linkfest was supposed to begin with a photo of me being ironical, but Beth can't get the picture to me till next week so no go. Oh, well ... the shot will still be relevant for a couple months yet.

Anyhoo ...

TacJammer has a bead on the Kerry campaign's 527 hypocrisy; how those folks do love to dish it out but so loathe to take it in. Once again, for the record, I oppose 527s in general and the assault on John Kerry's bravery during the Viet Nam war in particular. The Swift Vet ads - whether there's any truth to them or not - represent the very worst in dirty, mud-slinging, soft money politics. But I oppose 527s in support of Kerry every bit as much as I oppose those bashing him, and there has been an enormous amount of 527 money behind Kerry. As TacJammer plainly observes - and preserves for posterity - the Democrats have been snuggled up to unregulated groups like MoveOn since the very beginning; strange that they never complained about soft money ads till one came out defaming their candidate.

Hat tip on that link to Ith of Absinthe & Cookies.

Meanwhile, Garrett O'Hara of The O'Hara Factor - with whom I probably agree on little besides George Bush being preferable to John Kerry - links to a revealing article in the Arizona Daily Wildcat. I link it because reader Krakatoa and I have been having an e-mail discussion about liberal bias in America's university system. Both of us have remarked that the bias is largely among professors, and far less prevalent among students. Of course the professors sway the students - that's the entire reason their bias is even an issue - but college kids today seem more moderate or libertarian than they did 10 years ago. In any case, the Daily Wildcat article displays the extreme bias of The University of Arizona's professorship; while even the liberal media of America and Europe consider Al-Jazeera little more than a tabloid network catering to Islamist resentment of the west, UA Journalism Professors praised its documentary Control Room while simultaneously slamming the entirety of the American press. No criticism of Al-Jazeera reporters for showing up to film attacks on coalition forces before they happen, Professor Sharkey? Since when is it ethical to condone death, injury, and destruction so that one can get better access to a story?

Lastly, it looks like Steven den Beste is pulling USS Clueless into space dock for a while. He's been blogging for years and almost every post he's made has taught his readers something important about politics, science, or philosophy. Steven seems to be hanging up his keyboard because he's been enjoying his recent respite from reader mail so much that he'd like it to continue indefinately. Seeing the amount and type of mail he gets, I can't say I blame him. So listen: Do not send Steven letters about his hiatus. Do not send him letters of understanding and commiseration. Do not send him letters at all. Let the guy have his well-earned break, and maybe he'll come back to blogging when he feels rejuvenated enough to deal with writing articles and responding to his hordes of well-meaning but obviously exasperating e-mailers.

For now, the sharpest blade in the neocon arsenal must be allowed to hang peacefully in its honored spot above the mantelpiece. For as long as it wants to.

Happy Monday all. Short week for me this week - Thursday I go on vacation to DragonCon in Atlanta - so I suppose it's an especially happy Monday! The rest of you will just have to tough it out for the five full days. Poor bastards.