Lingua publica

The good and the bad...

web posted November 24, 2003

"Language has been an important weapon in the 'gay' movement's very swift advance. In the old days, there was 'sodomy': an act. In the late 19th century, the word 'homosexuality' was coined: a condition. A generation ago, the accepted term became 'gay': an identity. Each formulation raises the stakes: One can object to and even criminalize an act; one is obligated to be sympathetic toward a condition; but once it's a fully fledged 24/7 identity, like being Hispanic or Inuit, anything less than wholehearted acceptance gets you marked down as a bigot." -- Mark Steyn

"[G]un control often serves as a gateway to tyranny. Tyrants from Hitler to Mao to Stalin have sought to disarm their own citizens, for the simple reason that unarmed people are easier to control. Our Founders, having just expelled the British army, knew that the right to bear arms serves as the guardian of every other right. This is the principle so often ignored by both sides in the gun control debate. Only armed citizens can resist tyrannical government." -- Ron Paul

"Even now politicians use the phrase "federal dollars" as a synonym for "free money." It's a dangerous tendency, for it leaves the states accountable to Washington rather than to their own voters. This mix of state and federal governments is not just economically suspect but politically corrosive; it undermines the essence of real federalism: the integrity of both state and federal governments. If we're serious about states' rights, then we need to get serious about states' responsibilities. The two go together. As with love and marriage, you can't have one without the other." -- Paul Greenberg

"It was obvious that the democratization of the media would bring new voices into the field, but who knew that so many of those voices would be conservative, libertarian, or just cantankerously opposed to entrenched liberal doctrine?" -- John Leo

"...[O]ur necessary war global war on terror cannot be separated from the political struggle to extend human freedom." -- William Safire

"Like Israel, but in a much more powerful way, America embodies a different -- a nonconforming -- idea of the good, and refuses to abandon its moral clarity about the objective worth of that idea or of the free habits and institutions to which it has given birth." -- Natan Sharansky

"In all conflicts, there is of course a sin of extremism, but also one of naiveté." -- Victor Davis Hanson

"The death of an American soldier is front page news, while the death of his attacker is buried deep inside the paper, if reported at all. But there's another reason why the response to attacks are rarely reported. The military judiciously applies force, which means there's often no big explosion to show the viewing public back home. The enemy blows up civilians, while coalition forces use precision strikes to remove enemy combatants. But more to the point, the media are a lazy beast and, it seems, the Pentagon hasn't been doing a good job feeding it." -- Wall Street Journal

"[An Iraqi Muslim ayatollah] is furious at the press coverage. He says not only American television, but Arabic satellite TV, such as Al-Jazeera and the Abu Dhabi station, have mis-portrayed the great success that is Iraq after the fall of Saddam Hussein... [Iraqis] love the Americans and their President for cleaning up their streets, providing clean water, opening the schools." -- NBC's Bob Arnot

"The women of Afghanistan, imprisoned in their homes and beaten in the streets, and executed in public spectacles, did not reproach us for routing the Taliban. The inhabitants of Iraq's Ba'athist hell, with its lavish palaces and its torture chambers, with its massive statues and its mass graves, do not miss their fugitive dictator; they rejoiced at his fall." -- George W. Bush

"The U.S. military has had considerably more success in turning Iraq around than liberals have had in turning the ghettos around with their 40-year 'War on Poverty.' So far, fewer troops have been killed by hostile fire since the end of major combat in Iraq than civilians were murdered in Washington, DC, last year. How many years has it been since we declared the end of major U.S. combat operations against Marion Barry's regime? How long before we just give up and pull out of that hellish quagmire known as Washington, D.C.?" -- Ann Coulter

"It is the central focus of my life ...[it is] a matter of life and death." -- Billionaire George Soros on pledging $15.5 billion to unseat George W. Bush

"In 2000 we were trying to export clothes and wanted to choose a figure with worldwide charisma.... Our suits match [Bill] Clinton's character and personality." -- Wang Zhen for a Chinese company which offered Clinton $2 million to be its spokesmodel

"A memo to you liberals: the party is over. I'm back." -- Rush Limbaugh

"Indeed, due largely to Limbaugh liberals in the media have found their influence on public opinion waning steadily in recent years. Worse, from their point of view, they have been unable to come up with a liberal answer to the conservative talk shows. They have found no pill to assuage the pain that is Limbaugh." -- Lyn Nofziger

"But screw the Iraqi people; the 'peace' crowd know better than the ignorant natives what's good for them." -- Mark Steyn

"Rush Limbaugh went back to work Monday. Rush said that the 5 weeks he spent in rehab were the best weeks of his life. And Democrats say the 5 weeks he was off were the best weeks of their lives too." -- Jay Leno

"Master and Commander stars Russell Crowe as a navy captain in the Napoleonic Wars. He blows the French out of the ocean. The battle scenes are so realistic that the Democrats have begun demonstrating outside the theaters to protest the war." -- Argus Hamilton

web posted November 17, 2003

"[I]n the long run, stability cannot be purchased at the expense of liberty." -- U.S President George W. Bush

"Like the occupation of Germany in January 1946, America's work in Iraq is only getting underway. A huge amount of effort -- and danger -- still lies ahead. What Americans need now are leaders who can focus on the great work before them, not sideline snipers carping prematurely that the occupation has been 'botched.'" -- Jeff Jacoby

"There is nothing in the Constitution that allows the [Supreme] Court to read into the Constitution views of liberty that have no specific textual support and would not have occurred to its Framers." -- Peter Augustine Lawler

"But the truth is that making sure that the Founders' system of checks and balances applies to the judiciary as much as the other branches is currently the best way to respect the Constitution and its guarantee of real individual rights. It is vital to the project of American liberty that we restore the Constitution as the law to which judges are bound rather than a template for their creative license." -- W. James Antle III

"I will not be bland in what I write, for I am not blind to what I see." -- Sen. Zell Miller

"We've long been familiar with RINOs (Republicans in name only). Now Georgia Senator Zell Miller has emerged as a DINO, saying that partisanship on the Intelligence Committee is 'the first cousin of treason,' and that 'Heads ought to roll.'" -- Robert L. Bartley

"If a well is poisoned, it's poisoned by people stealing a memo of a staffer, which is in a file apparently, and then dropping it in the well, and then saying, 'Oh my ... the well is now poisoned'." -- Michigan Democratic Sen. Carl Levin, member of the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, with a flimsy defense of the now-disclosed plot of committee Democrats to politicize investigation of prewar intelligence regarding Iraq

"The fact that it happened in a classroom while an adult was present is almost inexcusable." -- Dallas school district spokesman Donald Claxton quoted in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on news that a 12-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy engaged in oral sex in a science class while a security monitor was present. Almost inexusable?

"Former Republican National Chairman Haley Barbour was elected governor of Mississippi.... He won handily. I'm glad he won but I'd been hoping he would win narrowly so I could write 'Barbour wins by a whisker' or 'Barbour has close shave.' Now I reduced to writing that 'Barbour trims incumbent Democrat'." -- Lyn Nofziger

"They should call it 'can't-move-on-dot-org'." -- Jonathan Grella, spokesman for House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, opining over the Leftist Web site

"If Hollywood wants to write about trashy White House behavior, why not a movie about Bill and Hillary Clinton?" -- John LeBoutillier

"Evidently, Clinton wasn't a hypocrite because no one was supposed to take seriously the notion that he respected women or believed in God." -- Ann Coulter

"If Howard Dean was living back [when Paul Revere came riding through] he would have yelled out the window, 'Shut up I'm trying to get some sleep in here.' It's a disgrace." -- Sen. Zell Miller

"Hillary Clinton agreed to emcee the Democrat Party dinner in Iowa.... How the mighty have fallen. Ten years ago Hillary Clinton was leading a health care revolution and today she is wondering if she should open with a Monica joke." -- Argus Hamilton

"And former Vice President Al Gore gave a blistering speech where he accused President Bush of undermining civil liberties. Well it wasn't really a blistering speech, he was in his backyard pretending the rake was a microphone." -- Jay Leno

"In many nations of the Middle East -- countries of great strategic importance -- democracy has not yet taken root. And the questions arise: Are the peoples of the Middle East somehow beyond the reach of liberty? Are millions of men and women and children condemned by history or culture to live in despotism? Are they alone never to know freedom, and never even to have a choice in the matter? I, for one, do not believe it. I believe every person has the ability and the right to be free." -- U.S. President George W. Bush

web posted November 10, 2003

"I want to tell you something about this war against terror we are fighting in Iraq and around the world. The foreign terrorists, the Ba'ath Party sympathizers, the Islamic extremists who wantonly kill Americans and innocent people from many nations, have no idea what they are up against. ... When we say we are going to win this global war on terrorism, we mean exactly that. We don't mean a moral victory, or victory in some abstract sense. The reality of more than 3,000 dead in New York, Pennsylvania and the Pentagon does not allow for such nuances." -- Gen. John M. Keane, Army vice chief of staff, at his retirement ceremony earlier this month

"When it comes to whether or not we are going to wage this war against terror in places like Kabul or Baghdad or be more likely to have it waged in places like Boston or Kansas, the American people understand the front line has become Iraq. ... We saw it again over the weekend, but that's where it needs to be. We need to take this fight to them and we need to support our troops in that effort." -- RNC Chairman Ed Gillespie

"America will never run. ...And we will always be grateful that liberty has found such brave defenders." -- U.S. President George W. Bush

"The failures of the Middle East are no more attributable to the wickedness of the West than the triumph of the West is due to the weakness of the Middle East. But comforting lies are humanity's favorite narcotic." -- Ralph Peters

"The war over the war on terror has just begun." -- Rich Lowry

"Under John Kerry's 'plan,' Saddam would still be in power, the French would still be selling him the 68mm missiles used in the attack on Paul Wolfowitz's Baghdad hotel last week, and there would still be Iraqis being fed feet-first into the industrial shredders. Or have I missed something?" -- Mark Steyn

"Iraq is not Vietnam. But you would never know that by listening to the Democratic candidates for president. With the possible exceptions of Dick Gephardt and Joe Lieberman, the candidates recommend that America abandon Iraq to either the terrorists or the UN." -- J.D. Hayworth

"Iraqis are grateful for the tremendous efforts and sacrifices the United States is making on our behalf. Yet, ultimately, only Iraqis themselves can restore security, rebuild national institutions, enact a constitution and elect a democratic government. America must not rebuff Iraqis who are eager to have a stake in this intimate national process. Like any free people, we want to ensure that we are in control of our own destiny." -- Iyad Alawi, president of the Iraqi Governing Council for the month of October

"It has always been in the interest of the federal government to encourage certain attitudes and ideas that support our fundamental freedoms and the responsibilities that go with them. A viable, living republic depends on it. The government, however, does not have the right to legislate what we must believe." -- Alan Caruba

"It just doesn't get any better than this." -- Rep. Ernie Fletcher, Gov.-elect of Kentucky, the first Republican to hold the office in 32 years

"Tomorrow is a day to move on and put this day behind us and get ready to accentuate the positive." -- Haley Barbour, former Republican National Committee chairman, Gov.-elect of Mississippi

"The city [of Washington, D.C.] is involved in an eternal love affair with itself." -- Dick Armey

"Pundits rarely go to church and are almost always too busy to go to war themselves." -- Wesley Pruden

"Any ideology can probably be described as a systematic way of misunderstanding the world." -- Fred Reed

"It came out today the economy grew at a 7.2% annual rate in the third quarter, which is the strongest pace in 20 years! Which is great news. Unless you're a Democratic presidential candidate. Then it's horrible news." -- Jay Leno

"Don Rumsfeld pointed out Thursday there have been major improvements in the lives of the Iraqi people since the fall of Saddam Hussein. There are hundreds of newspapers on the streets. It isn't the first time they've had freedom of speech in Iraq but it's the first time people may still be around to use it a second time." -- Argus Hamilton

web posted October 27, 2003

"The Left is so busy saying John Ashcroft is Hitler, and President Bush is Hitler, and Rudy Giuliani is Hitler that the only guy they wouldn’t call Hitler was the foreign guy with the mustache who was throwing people who disagreed with him into the wood-chipper." -- Dennis Miller

"As in the years of the Cold War, much is asked of us and much rides on our actions. A watching world is depending on the United States of America. Only America has the might and the will to lead the world through a time of peril toward greater security and peace. ... And as we've done before, we accept the great mission that history has given us." -- U.S.Vice President Dick Cheney

"Though still in prison, Joel Steinberg has a job lined up with a cable TV show in New York City. He qualified for this position...[by beating] his illegally adopted 6-year-old daughter to death in 1987....The recycling of perpetrators is simply part of the media game now....Jayson Blair...Stephen Glass...Roman Polanski...Marv Albert...Sydney Biddle Barrows, the 'Mayflower Madam'...Dick Morris...Or take the colorful career of Al Sharpton....[who] was an unprincipled racial agitator in New York. He was a co-perpetrator of the Tawana Brawley rape hoax. He also helped inflame a dispute between a Jewish storeowner and a black tenant. Picketers from Sharpton's National Action Network, sometimes joined by Sharpton himself, screamed about 'bloodsucking Jews' and 'Jew bastards,' threatening to burn down the building. After weeks of this, one of the protesters ran into the building, shot three people and ignited a fire that left seven dead. Sharpton's role in this bloodbath disappeared down the memory hole. Now he is a 'civil rights leader.' ....[T]he rapid refurbishing of appalling people is a constant threat in a culture with no higher standard than non-jugmentalism." -- John Leo

"How can there possibly be liberty and justice for all, when, in the name of justice, people claim rights to income, food, housing, education, health care, transportation, ad infinitum? We can't. Positive rights to receive such things, absent an obligation to earn them, must violate others' liberty, by taking some of their income without their consent. They are really just wishes, convertible into benefits for some only by employing the government to violate others' rights not to have what is theirs taken." -- Prof. Gary Galles of Pepperdine University

"There is no such thing as a free lunch and there are not enough rich people around to support a bloated welfare state. Sooner or later, everyone has to pay the tab. Like California, there is an immense day of reckoning coming for the U.S. as a whole, one people aren't being told is underway. So remember the golden rule of all socialist bureaucracies: 'In any situation, even life-threatening ones, bureaucrats will always act like bureaucrats in their own interests.' When you throw one group of rascals out, don't put more rascals in!" -- John Loeffler

"The time is long overdue to get rid of the outdated notion that liberal Democrats represent ordinary people. They represent such special interests as trial lawyers who keep our courts clogged with frivolous lawsuits, busybody environmentalists who think the government should force other people to live the way the greens want them to live, and of course the teachers' unions who think schools exist to provide their members with jobs. ... Someone has said people are not born stupid, but are made that way by education. Certainly that is true of what too often passes for education these days." -- Thomas Sowell

"Then again, can one really blame [the United Nations member states] for being reluctant to pony up [with military and economic aid for Iraq] when prominent American politicians are working to undermine the Iraq reconstruction effort? ...[T]wo Democratic presidential candidates, John Kerry and John Edwards, say they'll defy the UN and vote against funding Iraq's reconstruction -- even though both of them voted for the war resolution last year. Howard Dean also says if he were in Congress, he'd vote 'no,' unless he could get a tax increase in exchange for an affirmative vote. Dick Gephardt and Joe Lieberman intend to vote 'yes.' Wesley Clark courageously takes no position." -- James Taranto

"This is a response to a tragic situation. People are responding to cries for help and I think it's legitimate." -- Governor Jeb Bush signing emergency state legislation to save the life of brain-damaged Terri Schiavo, whose husband won his legal battle to starve her to death against the wishes of her parents, who want to care for her

"Our own history should remind us that the union of democratic principle and practice is always a work in progress." -- Condoleezza Rice

"One of the reasons people hate politics is that truth is rarely a politician's objective. Election and power are." -- Cal Thomas

"Nowhere in this country are racial quotas likely to get voter support. But such quotas exist because elected officials do not have to risk their careers by voting for quotas because they can leave that to judges." -- Thomas Sowell

"I've been troubled for some time about the reporting of all news organizations on the situation in Iraq. We often seem to be captive to the individual dramatic incident -- and those of us in television subject to one that comes with great video." -- ABC president David Westin

"Today our Democratic leaders look south and say, 'I see one third of the nation and it can go to hell.' " -- Democrat Sen. Zell Miller

"Americans are always asking why the rest of the world hates them. Well, the reason is Dennis Miller. ... You've all gone mental if you liked [his performance]." -- Elton John at benefit concert in LA where both performed in which Miller suggested we drill in ANWR

"I'm flattered. And of course, I'm also entertained, by the fact that they seem to ignore the reality that I lost." -- Senator John McCain on Democrat presidential candidates trying to emulate his campaign for President in 2000

"Even though he has only been a Democrat for a few weeks, Wesley Clark has already figured out that the key to being a real Democrat is creating new programs without figuring out how to pay for them." -- Christine Iverson, spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee

"It's reported that Tom Arnold may run for governor of Iowa. So I guess he got turned down for center position on 'Hollywood Squares.' .... I don't know if he's right for governor. I see him more as the governor's embarrassing brother." -- Jay Leno

"I said then as I say now: Bill Clinton's inability to understand what was fueling the rise of bin Laden as a phenomenon -- not as an individual -- was the greatest U.S. foreign-policy failure of the last half-century. It has affected hundreds of millions worldwide. Even if we get him now, who will be the next bin Laden? There are many willing candidates standing in line. Islamic radicalism exists today because Clinton didn't dismantle al-Qa'ida when he had the chance." -- Mansoor Ijaz, former Clinton administration Middle East liaison

"But why does this country, after it wins a war, habitually assume that the world has been permanently repaired? Why did we go on a holiday from global watchfulness in the roaring '90s, just as we had in the roaring '20s?" -- Former CIA Director James Woolsey

"We're all for Congress paying close attention to what it spends. But would that our honorable representatives were applying as much skepticism to the fine print of, say, the energy bill as they did to President Bush's $87 billion request for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan." -- Wall Street Journal



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