Over at National Review Online, Jay Nordlinger does a weekly column that is often sprinkled with brief snippets that are illuminating and often fun. I confess that I am impertinently stealing his shtick—even to the extent of throwing in a little musical snippet, because we share a great love for music.
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Just a few months ago, leftists were excoriating conservatives for being “the party of ‘No’”. (To which conservatives, including Rush Limbaugh, answered that we were actually the party of “Hell No!”) Take, as an example, this politico article.
But now the shoe is on the other foot. Leftists in the House haven’t put forward a budget—a constitutional responsibility—in more than two years; while mouthing mendacious rhetoric about fiscal sanity, they’ve opposed every fiscal sanity measure that the Republicans in both the House and the Senate have proposed. Who’s the party of “No” now?
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I’m continually amazed by the silliness in all this talk of how “weak” the Republican Presidential field is. Let’s cast our minds back—not far—to the last election cycle. The Democratics had two first-term Senators running. One had been first lady, but not much else. The other was a Chicago machine politician who had really done nothing but made a few good (at least from a leftist perspective) speeches. And then there were a bunch of also-rans: Chris Dodd, John Edwards, Dennis Kuchinich, and so on.
Why was nobody talking about how weak their field was? Why didn’t they focus more on the whackos amongst them and their many gaffes?
Well, besides the obvious left-leaning tilt of the media, which makes it unlikely that they would point out anything even potentially negative about their own favored side, the left is also far more willing to bash and name-call than the right is—at least on an institutional level. (Yes, I know that there’s plenty of name-calling on the right too, but I think there is a significant difference of degree…and the left is far meaner than the right.)
But what really galls me is when we do it to ourselves. And I’m not just talking about RINO idiots like David Brooks—who appears to know his Trollope, but is a little weak on his Federalist Papers. I’m talking about guys like Newt Gingrich, who used to be a genuine conservative leader in the House. Now he’s doing more damage to the Conservative movement than our opponents.
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Contrast and compare:
Hillary Clinton: “But I am sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration.”
Eva Longoria: “…[Obama] keeps getting beat up lately because there’s such an extremist movement happening and it’s a very dangerous.” She added that Obama has governed in a “state of emergency.”
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A friend has grown to like the music of Richard Wagner and asked me to recommend a good recording of the Ring of the Neibelung. Personally, I have yet to hear a recording better than the first stereo recording with Maestro Georg Solti and the Vienna Philharmonic. It’s difficult to find now, but the question made me re-visit my own copy. What a glorious sound, and what an outstanding cast: Hans Hotter, Birgit Nilsson, Kirsten Flagstad, Dietrich Fischer-Diskau, Christa Ludwig, George London, Wolfgang Windgassen, and many others–every one could legitimately be called “great.”
The sound technology is old enough that it might offend an audiophile, but the interpretation and singing are, in my opinion, unsurpassed.