Emily Litella: Act V — What’s Good for Romney Isn’t So Good for Hagel

By , February 15, 2013 8:29 am

Remember the Democrats’ feigned outrage over Mitt Romney’s income taxes? How they wanted him to come clean and lay 10 years of his IRS filings on the table when the standard was two? Remember how Harry Reid claimed Romney had not paid taxes with the only shred of evidence being a shadowy, unnamed source?

Well, apparently, that was then. This is now, and it’s Chuch Hagel, for Hell’s sake, and he’s only up for Secretary of State. So what’s the problem? Why’s Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) doing such nasty things to our boy? I mean, really! Or words to that effect:

But with his latest attack on Hagel, Cruz has gone too far. Cruz has every right — indeed, he has an obligation — to question Hagel vigorously. He has a right to demand relevant information. He has a right to vote against Hagel; indeed Republicans are now filibustering the nomination.

But he doesn’t have the right to smear Hagel, with no supporting evidence, with insinuations that the nominee received money from foreign governments or extremist groups.

“We do not know, for example, if he received compensation for giving paid speeches at extreme or radical groups,” Cruz told the Senate Armed Services Committee before it voted Tuesday to approve Hagel’s nomination. “It is at a minimum relevant to know if that $200,000 that he deposited in his bank account came directly from Saudi Arabia, came directly from North Korea.”

The “only reasonable inference” to draw from Hagel’s refusal to provide additional financial information, he said, is that “there was something in there that they did not want to make public.”

As the committee chairman, Michigan Democrat Carl Levin, pointed out, Cruz was attempting to unilaterally rewrite committee rules, which require two years of financial information, instead of the five Cruz demanded. And Cruz’s sleazy innuendos about hidden foreign money are undercut by a separate requirement to disclose any transactions with a foreign government — going back 10 years. (Emphasis supplied)

So it’s with a drum roll, that I bring Emily Litella back on stage because apparently, it only matters if it’s a Republican doing it, whatever the it is at the moment. Get it?

Maybe Some of The New Republic’s Best Friends are Black?

By , February 12, 2013 4:38 pm

The New Republic’s current issue is out. Here’s the cover (the toy robot is to obscure the address label):


Not that they’ll listen, but “Pot to ceramic kettle: You’re white!

Emily Litella: Act IV — Treasury Nominee Jack Lew’s Cayman Island Account

By , February 12, 2013 9:07 am

Just imagine if Treasury Nominee Jack Lew were a Republican named Mitt Romney.

. . . Faint Praise

By , February 7, 2013 8:16 am

A Connecticut Congressman is upset because the movie Lincoln portrays the state’s senators voting against the proposed 13th Amendment to abolish slavery when in fact they voted for it. That’s interesting, but even more so–to me anyway–is the following quote from historian Christian McWhirter, a researcher with the Papers of Abraham Lincoln:

Lincoln is an exceptionally good Hollywood historical film, so I think we have to have a certain amount of tolerance for certain amount of error. (Emphasis and italics supplied)

To put a face on the obvious (and to rework the quote a bit), Mr. McWhirter could have said what he said this way:

For Hollywood, that wasn’t a bad historical movie–if you ignore all the errors.

Oh, and then there’s this, lest we forget:

Going through the movie script vote by vote, CNN found that the important details are correct. By the narrowest of margins, after a breathless and unpredictable roll call, the amendment passes, with most Republicans in favor but many Democrats opposed. (Emphasis supplied)

By the way, I enjoyed the movie.

Haymarket Receives a Haymaker?

By , February 6, 2013 9:16 am

So what we’ve been told about the Haymarket riot may not be true?

I love that the professor’s discovery was prompted by a student’s question.

Timothy Messer-Kruse doesn’t remember her name, but the question she asked in his college classroom a dozen years ago changed his career — and now it may revolutionize everything historians thought they knew about a hallowed event in the imagination of the American Left. “In my courses on labor history, I always devoted a full lecture to Haymarket,” says Messer-Kruse, referring to what happened in Chicago on the night of May 4, 1886. He would describe how a gathering of anarchists near Haymarket Square turned into a fatal bombing and riot. Although police never arrested the bomb-thrower, they went on to tyrannize radical groups throughout the city, in a crackdown that is often called America’s first Red Scare. Eight men were convicted of aiding and abetting murder. Four died at the end of a hangman’s noose. Today, history books portray them as the innocent victims of a sham trial: They are labor-movement martyrs who sought modest reforms in the face of ruthless robber-baron capitalism.

As Messer-Kruse recounted this familiar tale to his students at the University of Toledo in 2001, a woman raised her hand. “Professor,” she asked, “if what it says in our textbook is true, that there was ‘no evidence whatsoever connecting them with the bombing,’ then what did they talk about in the courtroom for six weeks?”

The question stumped Messer-Kruse. “It had not occurred to me before,” he says. He muttered a few words about lousy evidence and paid witnesses. “But I didn’t really know,” he recalls. “I told her I’d look it up.” As he checked out the standard sources, he failed to find good answers. The semester ended and the student moved on, but her question haunted him. “My interest grew into an obsession.” As Messer-Kruse began to look more closely, he started to wonder if the true story of Haymarket was fundamentally different from the version he and just about everybody else had been told. (Emphasis added)

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