A conservatory of Ldotter blogs.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

My loathing of contemporary pop music. . .

. . .comes with a price. Since I simply can't bring myself to tune in the local Top 40 station, I never hear any of the scant listenable releases until well after their sell-by dates unless I happen to be riding in someone else's car. Today, I happened to ride with a friend to lunch when I heard a slightly jazzy acoustic pop song called "Bubbly", by a young artist named Colbie Caillat (which, improbably enough, rhymes with "ballet" according to her Myspace page). Until the disc jockey said her name, I was sure it was a new Norah Jones release. She's a virtual voice clone of the young chanteuse whose hits include "Don't Know Why" and "Come Away with Me."

Some people are turned off by artists who sound too much like other, bigger artists who came before them. I am, usually. But, in this case, I'm able to get past it simply because the song is so infectious. Clicking on her link will take you to her Myspace page, which features the obligatory Myspace Standalone Player. It features several songs off her new CD release, "Coco". "Bubbly" is among them and well worth the time it takes to click over and listen.

I'm no Ivy League Intellectual. . .

. . .so, I figure what rudimentary education I've had has been a windfall for the taxpayers of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. I come to this conclusion after having taken an online civics test hosted by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute, which I stumbled upon while perusing The Anchoress.

My results:
You answered 53 out of 60 correctly — 88.33 %
Average score for this quiz during September: 74.8%
Average score since September 18, 2007: 74.8%

She beat me by a couple of questions (Blast!) but I can still hold my head high, secure in the knowledge that I outperformed your average Ivy Leaguer by nearly 19 percentage points.

In your face, Harvard!


Friday, September 21, 2007

The unsettling saga. . .

. . .of George Archibald's embroglio with the Washington Times entered a new phase this Wednesday when he posted his account of an encounter with the paper's security staff as he and a photographer prepared to take snapshots for his upcoming book.

He makes sure to note on his blog that Tony Blankley has resigned as editorial page editor, as well as the paper's loss of two advertising salesmen to The Politico. However, his summation of these departures suggests that bitterness may be a growing component of his writing on the matter:
"Anyone who thinks these losses of talent and professionalism are not connected to The Washington Times' reputation as the white supremacist newspaper of Francis B. Coombs Jr. and Wesley Pruden Jr. is on drugs."

In fairness to Archibald, the bitterness is far from a one-way street, if BigheadDC is to be believed.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

If only half of this is true. . .

. . .the conservative press has let us down on a very basic, shameful level. George Archibald spent 21 years as a top reporter at the Washington Times. In those 21 years, he was nominated for four Pulitzers. So, obviously, there's some credibility to his words.

As I've said again and again, much to the chagrin of many friends, there is simply no room in the debate over immigration - illegal or otherwise - for hatred, white supremacy, xenophobia, or nativism. Those are the tired ideas of angry idiots that have been rightly cast aside by all people of goodwill. There is a rational case to be made for clamping down on immigration in any form, and it needs to be heard out. But, when it turns out that the case is being driven by people who seek to return America to a time when the value of human lives was based on skin color and heritage, it needs to be exposed for what it is: evil.

Mr. Archibald's piece follows one that he wrote regarding a posting at Media Bistro's blog, FishbowlDC, written by Patrick Gavin, deputy editorial page editor of the Washington Examiner, which currently employs former Washington Times writers Bill Sammon and Rowan Scarborough. Gavin recounts a flare-up between Robert Stacy McCain, Assistant National Editor for the Washington Times, and Deputy National Editor Victor Morton, which led McCain to storm into the office of National Editor Ken Hanner and loudly resign his position before kicking and slamming doors on his way out of the building. At the time of Gavin's posting at FishbowlDC, the speculation was that Hanner and Fran Coombs, Managing Editor, would try to smooth things over in order to bring McCain back into the fold in order to keep a full-blown scandal from erupting that would threaten the paper's future.

In his blog post on this incident, Archibald goes on to describe a newsroom controlled by bullying white supremacists, crumbling under the weight of incompetence and mismanagement as a consequence of agenda-driven editorial policy. In the piece written on September 11 (linked at the beginning of this post), he illustrates his assertions and demonstrates connections between members of the editorial staff and various white nationalist/supremacist organizations and their members. He holds nothing back, and his contempt for the people who now control the editorial policies of the Washington Times is clear and visceral.

Apparently, the atmosphere in the Washington Times newsroom has led a considerable number of its staff members to talk to Max Blumenthal, son of the execrable Sidney Blumenthal. Ostensibly, there were more than a dozen "highly placed" staffers at the Times who agreed to speak with the left-wing reporter for the loudly, proudly leftist magazine, The Nation, albeit off the record, fearing the career consequences of publicly speaking out against the belligerent editorial regime. Archibald himself, feeling freed by no longer being in need of a paycheck from the Times, related the following to Blumenthal in the story:
Countering the "feel-good perspective" on race appears to be Coombs's passion. George Archibald told me that when he showed Coombs a photo of his nephew's African-American girlfriend, Coombs "went off like a rocket about interracial marriage and how terrible it was. He actually used the phrase 'the niggerfication of America.' He said, 'Not in my lifetime. If my daughter went out with a black, I would cut her throat.'"

Archibald went on to tell of an incident in which he and several staffers were discussing their pro-life stances and how to work them into the paper, when Coombs argued, "How do you think we're going to stop the population growth of the minorities and all the welfare people?"

In his defense, Coombs responded to the accusation by saying, "Anybody who told you that I support some kind of genocidal abortion policy is beyond deluded. . .Do you truly believe that in a modern American newsroom a person could use phrases like that? That is beyond preposterous. That is just unbelievable. Anyone who says that is a complete liar."

It's tough to know what to make of all of this, but the reading has been fascinating, and it behooves all conservatives of good faith to know what's going on. Perhaps we're not getting the full story. It's quite possible that Archibald has a personal vendetta against Coombs, McCain, and Pruden. But, when accusations such as these are leveled by people of Archibald's stature who, unlike Blumenthal, don't appear to have any ideological motivations for damaging The Washington Times, further digging is warranted. The Times is far too important a paper to conservatism to allow it to be dragged into the muck and slime of racial demagoguery and nativist lunacy.

free website counters