5:13 PM Sep 27, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

This is sad...

6 Ark. nuns excommunicated for heresy

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Six Catholic nuns have been excommunicated for heresy after refusing to give up membership in a Canadian sect whose founder claims to be the reincarnation of the Virgin Mary, the Diocese of Little Rock announced Wednesday.

Let's face it: God would have to be pretty pissed at the Virgin Mary to reincarnate her as a Canadian.

6:25 PM Sep 18, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Anyone who wants to can see Uranus this week.

Finding Uranus for yourself can be a challenge, but a little persistence pays off.

Try using both hands!

8:27 PM Sep 15, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

It is incomprehensible that the administration so rarely discusses the moral side of our achievement in Iraq. No doubt it's still impossible, in today's world, to launch a major war and depose a government merely for the sake of humanity, merely to rescue a people that is being torn apart and eaten alive by its rulers, merely on principle--although it is fair to wonder, 60-odd years after the Shoah, when it will be possible. But Americanism has long held that when we are forced to fight for our interests, we ought to fight for our principles too.

4:15 PM Sep 15, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

The Myth of the Racist Republicans

The myth that links the GOP with racism leads us to expect that the GOP should have advanced first and most strongly where and when the politics of white solidarity were most intense. The GOP should have entrenched itself first among Deep South whites and only later in the Periphery. The GOP should have appealed at least as much, if not more, therefore, to the less educated, working-class whites who were not its natural voters elsewhere in the country but who were George Wallace's base. The GOP should have received more support from native white Southerners raised on the region's traditional racism than from white immigrants to the region from the Midwest and elsewhere. And as the Southern electorate aged over the ensuing decades, older voters should have identified as Republicans at higher rates than younger ones raised in a less racist era.

Each prediction is wrong. The evidence suggests that the GOP advanced in the South because it attracted much the same upwardly mobile (and non-union) economic and religious conservatives that it did elsewhere in the country.

Take presidential voting. Under FDR, the Democrats successfully assembled a daunting, cross-regional coalition of presidential voters. To compete, the GOP had to develop a broader national outreach of its own, which meant adding a Southern strategy to its arsenal. In 1952, Dwight Eisenhower took his campaign as national hero southward. He, like Nixon in 1960, polled badly among Deep South whites. But Ike won four states in the Peripheral South. This marked their lasting realignment in presidential voting. From 1952 to the Clinton years, Virginia reverted to the Democrats only once, Florida and Tennessee twice, and Texas—except when native-son LBJ was on the ballot—only twice, narrowly. Additionally, since 1952, North Carolina has consistently either gone Republican or come within a few percentage points of doing so.

In other words, states representing over half the South's electoral votes at the time have been consistently in play from 1952 on—since before Brown v. Board of Education, before Goldwater, before busing, and when the Republicans were the mainstay of civil rights bills. It was this which dramatically changed the GOP's presidential prospects. The GOP's breakthrough came in the least racially polarized part of the South. And its strongest supporters most years were "New South" urban and suburban middle- and upper-income voters. In 1964, as we've seen, Goldwater did the opposite: winning in the Deep South but losing the Peripheral South. But the pre-Goldwater pattern re-emerged soon afterward. When given the option in 1968, Deep South whites strongly preferred Wallace, and Nixon became president by winning most of the Peripheral South instead. From 1972 on, GOP presidential candidates won white voters at roughly even rates in the two sub-regions, sometimes slightly more in the Deep South, sometimes not. But by then, the Deep South had only about one-third of the South's total electoral votes; so it has been the Periphery, throughout, that provided the bulk of the GOP's Southern presidential support.

A few years old, but very, very interesting and worth a (re)read.


7:37 PM Sep 14, 2007by Rob Ritchie

6:55 PM Sep 14, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

I have repetedly written that this blog is, basically, drivel.

Which it is.

But that doesn't mean that all blogs are drivel, something of which I am glad to say President Bush is aware:

This morning, I had the privledge of being among a small group of eight bloggers invited to the White House for a personal meeting with the President. We spent a full hour in the Roosevelt Room with President Bush and a few senior staff, including both outgoing press secretary Tony Snow and incoming press secretary Dana Perino. In addition to the folks in the room, we had two embedded bloggers videoconferenced in from Baghdad. After the discussion, the President showed us into the Oval Office, did some quick photos which each of us, and then led us out to the patio where he continued out to Marine One and we watched him take off while the assembled press watched us, clearly wondering "who the heck are those people?".

Read the rest.

7:51 PM Sep 13, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

As I have written before, this is the Number One reason Dogs are Better than Cats:

True Blue Dog Defends Woman Against Alligator Attack

Blue, the two-year-old faithful family pooch, came to [the disabled woman's] side and laid beside her as she petted him. Then suddenly Blue became agitated, growled and dashed off into the darkness.

"She heard some noises, and then the dog started to fight," describes Ruth Gay's daughter Sylvia Gibson. "It was very dark and she couldn’t see what was going on."

At least once, Blue returned to Ruth's side and stood guard before launching back out against the unseen assailant. Albert Gibson, her son-in-law adds, "She could hear Blue yelping and whining. She knew he was getting hurt. Then it stopped."

Luckily for all, Blue was victorious, but hurt. But what was he fighting?

As Ms. Gay was treated at Lee Memorial Hospital and Blue was treated at Suburban Animal Hospital, the details surfaced; the unseen assailant was one of three 6- to 12-foot long alligators that had been spotted earlier that day at the canal.

Pious gratitude to: Florida Cracker who has another story about a couragous dog.

7:26 PM Sep 13, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Parents, make sure your kids know you can live with disappointment.

5:40 PM Sep 13, 2007

by Rob Ritchie



8:56 AM Sep 12, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Why They Hate Us

Osama bin Laden made it pretty clear why he and his “martyrs” attacked us. It wasn’t because of Third World wretchedness of the sort my father had spent his career combatting. It was because we are infidels, and we had set our vile combat boots on his sacred sand to defend it from another Arab, Saddam Hussein. Also, though Osama would never admit it, he attacked us because we are better than him. An abomination. Pork-eating, alcohol-swilling Christian dogs and even Jews who are actually able to accomplish things in this world, rather than live off it like parasites. When the Word was dictated to Mohammed, this wasn’t how it was supposed to be.

3:00 AM Sep 11, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Six years without a terrorist attack in the United States.

Thank you American Armed Forces and President George W. Bush!

Special delivery for Osama:

8:39 AM Sep 9, 2007by Rob Ritchie

A 1000-pound, laser-guided makeover package from the Manolo.

Pious gratitude to: The Blogfather

2:31 PM Sep 8, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

Here's something (thankfully) you don't see every day: felony crimes against nature.

8:28 AM Sep 8, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

A lovely column about Madeleine L'Engle, who passed away this week.

Another grim milestone....

7:08 PM Sep 6, 2007by Rob Ritchie

1:22 PM Sep 4, 2007

by Rob Ritchie

An interesting post on Gay Extortion and those who excuse it.

Somehow, if a conservative thug threatened to out a Congressman unless he voted against the homosexual agenda, I don’t think the extortionist would be the subject of a puff piece in the Washington Post. Do you?

11:02 AM Sep 3, 2007

by Rob Ritchie


When a scandal involves a Republican, his or her party affiliation is mentioned in the lead. When it involves a Democrat, party affiliation typically is mentioned deep in the story, if at all.

But media bias is not the main reason why Republicans suffer more from scandals. Democratic voters expect Democrats to steal on their behalf. Lawmakers are judged on the basis of how many goodies from the federal treasury they can shower on their constituents. The typical Democratic voter doesn't mind terribly if their senator or congressman takes something for himself along the way. (Time Magazine's story on Rep. Mollohan's re-election was headlined, "Pork Trumps Scandal.")

The typical Republican voter wants his senator or congressman to keep his taxes low, his government honest. He is furious when GOP lawmakers stick their fingers in the cookie jar, or give lip service to values they do not practice.

Republicans must be squeaky clean to win elections because their voters will crucify them for behavior Democratic voters wink at so long as the pork keeps flowing. This is why his GOP colleagues already have stripped Sen. Craig of his committee assignments, and many have called for his resignation, while Democratic senators are comfortable having among them a man who left to drown in his automobile a young woman with whom he was having an extramarital affair.

Pious gratitude to: Powerline