Miserable failure: Harry Reid’s debate performance

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A consensus appears to be emerging amongst the pundit class when it comes to Harry Reid’s performance in last night’s debate with Sharron Angle: He stank. Check out what the Las Vegas Review-Journal’s Sherman Frederick wrote.

The Las Vegas Sun’s Jon Ralston, not a fan of Angle’s, nevertheless declared her the winner of the debate (via):

Sharron Angle won The Big Debate.

Angle won because she looked relatively credible, appearing not to be the Wicked Witch of the West (Christine O’Donnell is the good witch of the Tea Party) and scoring many more rhetorical points. And she won because Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid looked as if he could barely stay on a linear argument, abruptly switching gears and failing to effectively parry or thrust.

Whether the debate affects the outcome — I believe very few Nevadans are undecided — it also perfectly encapsulated the race: An aging senator who has mastered the inside political game but fundamentally does not seem to care about his public role (and is terrible at it) versus an ever-smiling political climber who can deliver message points but sometimes changes her message or denies a previous one even existed.

Look upon these works, ye mighty, and despair.

New Republic’s T.A. Frank whines:

I could go on with my laments about Reid’s performance—about how he fumbled an answer on Social Security, about how he picked Antonin Scalia and Byron “Whizzer” White as particular Supreme Court favorites, about how he couldn’t find his closing statement and wound up shuffling through his papers and then reading something that didn’t really work anyway. But we’re all busy people. No, let’s not dwell on the past, the 12-long-hours-ago past.

Anyway, the biggest problem wasn’t that Harry Reid is a bad debater, though that he clearly is. The trouble was that Reid faced an opponent of far stronger beliefs and far fewer scruples. In an appraisal of the rambling style of George Bush the Elder, Michael Kinsley once speculated on the relationship between convictions and manner of speaking. “A man anchored in true beliefs of some sort not only would be more articulate in expressing those beliefs,” wrote Kinsley. “He would make a better liar, too.” This was why “Ronald Reagan, a man of a few, clear, rock-hard beliefs, was a brilliant liar.” Harry Reid basically offered the truth, but with little conviction or coherence. Sharron Angle offered conviction and coherence, but with very little truth. You might prefer the former type of salesperson, but which one makes the sale?

He actually has it backwards on who was lying and who was telling the truth, but we’ll give him credit anyway for declaring the obvious truth about how Reid’s debate performance, well, sucked.

Hotline on Call:

Throughout the Nevada Senate campaign, it was Republican Sharron Angle who looked unprepared for-prime-time. But after last night’s debate, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid looked more like the gaffe-prone politician as he struggled to make headway in one of the closest and most consequential Senate contests.

Angle took full advantage of Reid’s position as a political insider, taunting him for his support of Democratic policies, from the stimulus to the health care bill. At one point, Angle told Reid to “man up” – and later questioned how he became so wealthy as a public servant.

“I’m not a career politician,” Angle said in her opening remarks. “I live in a middle class neighborhood in Reno; Senator Reid lives in the Ritz-Carlton in Washington, DC.”

Reid, recognizing the importance of the economy in this election, said his top priority as a senator is to create jobs. Angle retorted: “Harry Reid, it’s not your job to create jobs. It’s your job to create confidence to get the private sector to create jobs.”

Reid didn’t help his own cause either, fumbling through his notes during his closing statement and misidentifying the “Department of Education” as the “Department of Energy” and failing to aggressively take advantage of Angle’s very conservative positions on whole host of issues. And he offered frequent praise for a host of Republicans, like Antonin Scalia and former President George W. Bush, hardly a way to energize the Democratic base that’s so crucial to his success.

By debate’s end, Reid had failed to land any significant blows on Angle. He looked unprepared for Angle’s barbs. With just one day until early voting becomes available to Nevada residents, Reid’s performance didn’t improve his precarious political standing.

And really – how hard could it be to best Angle in a debate, considering how Reid and his campaign have relentlessly tried to paint her as an extremist nut on every issue under the sun, from health care to social security to the war on terror? Before Angle became the nominee, it was widely known that – behind the scenes – ReidCo. were hoping they’d have to face her in the general election because they figured the embattled Senate Majority Leader would make political mincemeat out of her so-called “extreme positions.” That said, while it’s true Angle has made some serious mistakes since becoming the GOP nominee, she’s held her own and has kept the poll numbers close in Nevada, which some polls showing her ahead within the margin of error, some dead even, and some showing her behind within the margin of error. Angle’s campaign is a clear example of how you never, never, never give up – even when everyone, including some in your own party, are telling you you’ll never succeed.

As for Reid? Well, his debate performance last night pretty much mirrored his performance as Senate Majority Leader: He’s a partisan hack, a colossal embarassment, a consumate liar, motivated primarily by self-interests rather than the interests of the people who sent him to the Senate, who was and is a miserable failure at his job. In the final few weeks leading up to election day – and while early voting is now taking place in Nevada – let’s hope its residents don’t forget that when casting their ballots.

Harry Reid

'Why doesn't anybody like me?'

In Islam, marital rape isn’t rape-rape

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A few weeks ago, I presented a video clip featuring a distinguished Egyptian cleric who told a rapt interviewer that Allah had created the punishment of beating a wife for refusing her husband sex and that this was a way of honoring her.

But this left open the question, what to do if she won’t help her husband get his freak on, even after a good beating?

Simple! He can just force her to have sex, since, according to the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America, forcing your wife to have sex against her will really isn’t rape:

In the name of Allah, all praise is for Allah, and may peace and blessing be upon the Messenger of Allah and his family. To proceed:

For a wife to abandon the bed of her husband without excuse is haram [forbidden]. It is one of the major sins and the angels curse her until the morning as we have been informed by the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace). She is considered nashiz (rebellious) under these circumstances. As for the issue of forcing a wife to have sex, if she refuses, this would not be called rape, even though it goes against natural instincts and destroys love and mercy, and there is a great sin upon the wife who refuses; and Allah Almighty is more exalted and more knowledgeable.

Notice that? Even though the husband is committing an act that “destroys love and mercy,” it isn’t rape and the sin is hers. Again, Islam makes the woman the one responsible for the sexual behavior of the man.

Be sure to read the whole thing, because Dr. Bostom opens with a discussion of a similar organization in the UK that also argues there is no rape within a marriage. I can understand their logic, since these sharia law experts define rape as “adultery by force,” making the marital state a prerequisite condition and meaning rape can only occur outside of marriage.

But understanding is not the same as approving. It is, in fact, utterly barbaric and disgusting, again turning the woman in a marriage into little more than the man’s property and justifying, or at least excusing, unspeakable atrocities against her.

And they call this civilized?

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

Detroit: the railroad to nowhere

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When your city’s population has shrunk by half since 1950, thousands of buildings are unoccupied, Hollywood uses it for “urban apocalypse” shots, and it’s earned the title of “Murder Capital of the USA,” what does it need?

No, not a Marine Expeditionary Force, silly! It needs a $500 million light rail project!

That goes nowhere.

Reason.TV has the story:

Yeesh.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg need to man up

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One of the few unpleasant things columnists/pundits/political bloggers have to do in their daily lives is read and/or watch stories they would have rather gone their whole lives without noticing, because there are many such stories that come up which deserve an informed commentary that can’t be written unless said stories are perused and examined. Such is the case with having to endure ABC’s “The View” on occasion, and yesterday was no different. A drama unfolded Thursday morning when View co-hosts Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg “stormed” off the set after getting angry at Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly over a discussion about whether or not the Ground Zero mosque plans should proceed. He remarked that Muslims killed innocents on 9-11, which launched both Behar and Goldberg into galactic orbit. Alana Goodman at NewsBusters has the relevant part of the transcript:

If you can’t stand the heat, then don’t invite Bill O’Reilly on your show to talk about current events. Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar flew off the handle during a live taping of “The View” on Thursday, storming off-stage during a dispute with O’Reilly over the Ground Zero mosque.

O’Reilly set the two women off after he said that, “Muslims killed us on 9/11.” Goldberg took offense at the statement, exclaiming “That is such bull—-!”

“Extremists did that!” yelled a clearly agitated Goldberg. “What religion was Mr. McVeigh? There was an extremist as well and he killed people –”

At that point Behar stood up angrily, telling O’Reilly that, “I don’t want to sit here. I don’t. I’m outraged by that statement.”

“You’re outraged about Muslims killing us on 9/11?” O’Reilly asked, bewilderedly, as both Behar and Goldberg fled the stage.

You can view/read the full exchange, and what led up to the “big moment”, at that link.

AllahPundit tackles the stupidity and hypocrisy of both Goldberg’s and Behar’s collective meltdown:

O’Reilly’s sin here is to say that 9/11 was perpetrated by Muslims rather than by Muslim extremists, an offense so egregious to Behar that her delicate conscience had to be removed from his presence. Funny thing: That same conscience never trembled when leftist moron Rosie O’Donnell dropped dark hints about 9/11 being an inside job on a regular basis on the show. In other words, fail to specify which view of Islam the hijackers held and Behar’s apt to need smelling salts; suggest that the attack wasn’t perpetrated by Muslims at all and … not a twitch. You’re a good liberal, Joy. Say, I wonder what happens on Joy’s talk show when lefty guests deride “the tea party” as racist, violent, anti-gay, etc etc? Does she walk out then too in indignation at the guests’ refusal to properly qualify which tea partiers they mean? I’d check the tapes, except … see the first paragraph above.

As for Whoopi, she chimes in with ye olde left-wing canard about Timothy McVeigh being a Christian. It’s not true — unlike the hijackers, neither he nor his motive were religious — but no amount of persuasion will get liberals to give up that talking point. It’s too useful in drawing false equivalencies when jihadists attack.

Even worse? As AllahP notes in a later post, on Behar’s show last night, she went postal on BillO’s “9-11 hate speech” while … sitting next to 9-11 Truther Jesse Ventura.

You really cannot make this stuff up. Behar’s selective “outrage” is noted with disgust.

There is no issue that brings out the blatant hypocrisy, illogic, stupidity, and duplicitous nature of activist liberals more than when it comes to Christianity and the left’s outrageous attempts at equating rare and isolated incidents of extremism committed because of the mistaken belief by a tiny few wackos that the Bible promotes violence against non-believers, to the routine, worldwide Islamofascistic terrorism that is both promoted and mandated by the Koran itself. These are the real underlying facts of the matter that nitwits like Behar and Goldberg refuse to acknowledge, so instead of confronting the fact that Muslims DID kill thousands of innocents on 9-11 and in fact continue to do so, they come up with a case of the vapors and cut and run off the set until BillO apologizes.

These ladies need to, as the Republican nominee for Senate in Nevada Sharron Angle would say, man up and defend their positions – but they can’t so they run away instead. We’ve all seen this act so many times before, haven’t we?

Let’s also keep in mind some of Behar’s past “pearls of wisdom” including the comparison of President Bush praying to God to an Islamifascist praying to Allah:

The National Day of Prayer is coming up on May 6, but on “The Joy Behar Show” April 29, she was discussing the diversity of religion in America with former talk show host Phil Donahue.

In a discussion about the separation of church and state, Behar absurdly compared Bush’s prayers to God with terrorists’ prayers to Allah.

“But remember, George Bush is the one who said that God told him to go into Iraq. The same as that terrorists say that Allah tells them. And what’s the difference between them and Bush I’d like to know,” Behar said.

Donahue suggested that presidents shouldn’t pray: “The framers were right. They saw this coming. You know, what we don’t want is a president who talks to God every day and God talks back.”

Sigh. As I noted at the time, Behar’s “facts” were more than just a little off.

Goldberg, on the other hand, is on record for – among other things like indicating she’d enjoy a threesome w/ House Speaker Pelosi and her husband – suggesting that we should “show reverence” for women who have abortions. She also infamously opined that what Roman Polanski did to an innocent 13 year-old girl in 1977 was not really “rape-rape.”

So these ladies apparently don’t mind dishing out controversial opinions – opinions which, BTW, have no basis in reality – but when it comes to someone dishing out TRUTH, as was the case with BillO’s comments about Muslims murdering innocents on 9-11, then they can’t handle it.

What is the old saying about “If you can’t take the heat, stay out of the (proverbial) kitchen” again?