Mailvox: He’s divorced? I’m so shocked!

AW responds to today’s column: “Indeed, one wonders that women have sex at all after plodding one’s way through this morass of marital misery.” Because it’s the surest and simplest way to pay for your meal ticket if you have no other talents or skills. As my first wife once said to me, “I don’t enjoy sex with you, I’ve never enjoyed sex with you, and now that I’ve got two kids, a house, and a new car, I don’t have to fake it any longer.”

“Perhaps women have been spoiled by a lifetime of freely saying things to others that would have earned a man doing the same a black eye.” Backed up by legal system that operates on the principle, “First, handcuff the man.” Never mind saying the most venomous things without fear of reprisal, even if she’s throwing crockery (see wife 1.0 again), it’s the man’s fault. The wonder is that more men don’t say “forget this” and decide to turn gay. Or maybe this explains the remarkable strides made by a certain agenda in the last decade…

“People… who don’t need people… are the ha-a-appiest people.”

– Dilbert

I have been remiss

Someone asked who is in the running for the Libertarian nomination. I only know who one of the candidates is. I’m going to look into that and into the Constitution Party’s nominee and make a primary endorsement for both.

We apologize for the shoddy service.

Straight-talkin’ George Delano

John Podhoretz writes: As a frustrated White House official told me last week, everything the president has done to anger conservatives arises from proposals he made while he was running for president in 2000. They accepted his advocacy of the proposals then, so why are they complaining now? He did not run for president as a small-government conservative, and yet they backed him to the hilt four years ago. So why the enmity today?

It’s a good question, and a sobering one. Recall that conservatives backed Bush in 2000 without knowing just how dreadfully he and this nation would be challenged by the events of 9/11 and their aftermath. They supported him, in other words, when he was merely promising to be a big-spending conservative. The president they got turned into a great wartime leader, and now some conservatives are griping about how he is actually fulfilling some of the promises they were willing to overlook when they wanted to back a winner four years ago.

Yeah, see this is precisely why some of us on the Right didn’t vote for him then. And it’s why we won’t vote for him in 2004. What I’d like to know is why no one ever lies when they run for office and then governs to the Right of their campaign promises.

Mailvox: check 3-4

GNC writes: blah blah blah…if you believe in what you say, why dont you go and teach a group or middle school boys how to deal with their change bodies…what a windbag you are.

Not really hysteria as per (4), but the spelling grammatical errors suffice, especially with just a dash of (3) thrown in for spice.

UPDATE: We finally got our long almost entirely pointless rant about (1) women not respecting men, but it’s both too long and too uninteresting to bother posting. Still nothing on (2) though. Hmmm.

Bark little doggy

Rich Brookhiser writes on NRO: We are in a war, GWB understands it, and very little else matters. Of the preceding points, perhaps only the last matters. We want the United States and the civilization it is defending to prevail, and at this moment that means we want George W. Bush to win re-election. We also know that even victory will involve great and destabilizing losses. Nobody promised us a perfect life. That’s why we’re conservatives.

Ask yourself if this logic would work for you if you substituted FDR, LBJ or Woodrow Wilson for George Delano. Supporting a President who is waging a war and wanting the United States to win doesn’t make you conservative. Neither does understanding that no one promised perfection. The sad thing is, there are probably plenty of people who not only think that this means something, but is convincing.

Mailvox: check one-half

Jill writes, somewhat as predicted: Vox you are ranting this time and making no sense. First you don’t even eludicate exactly on WHAT women are supposedly “not taking responsibility.” And two, don’t make me LAUGH. Just because men think women don’t take responsibility is nothing more than projection. It has never changed, even down to men STILL blaming women for THEIR lack of responsibility.I suggest men grow up and take the responsibility they have avoided for centuries before they take it upon themselves to preach to the sex that has been shouldering that lack of responsibility.

How can “their words, their actions and their decisions” possibly be considered a failure to elucidate for what women are failing to take responsibility? The specifics vary from individual to individual. I’ll consider believing that women are collectively ready to take general responsibility for themselves the next time I see a woman insult someone, get punched in the mouth, then get up and say, “yeah, I deserved that.” Which has happened, in my experience, ah, let me see… never.

A female friend of mine once got badly hurt after mouthing off to a stranger who rather forcefully demonstrated his belief in the inherent equality of men and women. Her date, a similarly propagandized young man, didn’t defend her, presumably on grounds of self-responsibility. Why should he bear the consequences for her words? A rather damning indictment of where 30 years of feminism have gotten us, true, but she did learn what every man knows; take responsibility for your words, as they can have unpleasant and unforeseen consequences.

I love the capital letters. Jill’s email doesn’t quite count as (1) asserting that women don’t respect men and have every reason for doing so, but the implication is certainly there based on the context of the response. I’ll call it one-half down, three and one-half to go. In any event, there’s a lot more to taking responsibility than being willing to raise a child after you’ve had sex.

Down with Derb

John Derbyshire writes: Yes, I got a lot of e-mail about my postings too, some of it angry. Who the heck do I think I am, criticizing Bush’s performance? Etc., etc. Well, I’m a citizen, and this is not North Korea. I want GWB to win the general election in November. I wish him well. I think a Kerry presidency would be a horrible disaster…. As for the lese majeste accusation: Shove it. This is a republic.

Word em up, D. The reasons are several, most of them Federal. I totally agree, except for the bit about wanting George Delano to win. Unless, of course, “want” and “believe will be marginally less disastrous” are rather more synonymous than I was led to believe.

Joe Farah puts it even better:

Now there are those who would blame me because John Kerry will become the next president. Don’t blame me. Blame Bush. I am not supporting Kerry. Kerry is a creep. But I cannot and will not support the lesser of two evils. My faith teaches me that light and dark don’t mix. My faith teaches me I’m not to have anything to do with evil. I’m not supposed to compromise with it.

And that, my friends, is THE WORD.

Those irrepressible socialists

They’re at it again. Strange, how these Democratic People’s Republics just keep happening to turn their countries into one charnal house after another. Such a long series of an unaccountable coincidences! We surely don’t want that to happen here. But to stop it elsewhere, we the people cede more power to the central government.

And they say irony is dead.

Mailvox: Avoiding responsibility

CM writes: You went the long speculative way around in order to get to your speculative, sort-of conclusion. It was a conclusion that left me frustrated, and so I decided to do something responsible about it, instead of: just whine, complain to a gurlll-frain or write you an unconstructive, insulting letter. ANYBODY on the planet, male or female, who doesn’t take responsibility for their behaviors, is basically a liar about reality and therefore sins relentlessly against most everybody around them – male or female. That this avoidance of truth-seeking, truth-seeing, and truth-telling is primarily (as you imply) a female sin, is an interesting speculation. I tend to doubt it, and am now going to study the matter. My first step will be to take it up with 6 family counselors I know, 4 who are women and 2 who are men. I promise to write you about what I find out. Give me a couple of months, please.

Thank you for your self-restraint and decision to approach the matter constructively. I’ll be quite interested to hear the results of your little investigation. However, I am sure that plenty of men also seek to avoid responsibility. Just look at all the fatherless children, for one thing, and stoners living in their parent’s basement. But logically, there are three possibilities:

1. Men try harder to avoid responsibility

2. Women try harder to avoid responsibility

3. Both men and women try equally hard to avoid responsibility

Those are the three options. I don’t find (3) to be remotely credible. My personal experience, which is admittedly only anecdotal, strongly tends to lean towards (2). To give one example, when I graduated from college, every single man in my class with whom I was acquainted already had a job. Less than half of the women, all graduating from the same elite university, did.

I happen to believe that many women are worthy of respect that they do not receive. I do not have a definitive answer for why they do not, I am merely attempting to suggest one possible solution that may help these women begin to receive the respect they deserve. The key, of course, is to begin by understanding that not everyone is worthy of respect. To suggest that everyone is so worthy does nothing but diminish the meaning of the word. All we have the right to expect is polite civility and the chance to prove ourselves worthy of respect.

The other side of Columbine

From the Anchorage Daily News:He [Tom Maloney] was fascinated by rockets and airplanes, mastered rock climbing, and obtained his pilot’s license at age 14. Fifteen months after he enrolled at Central, on a Saturday morning in November 1998, the eighth-grader strung up a rope and hung himself at his parents’ home. When paramedics arrived, he had no pulse. After 15 minutes of CPR, they were able to get his heart going. But the boy had already suffered extensive and irreversible brain damage. His family sued the School District in 2000. Among their claims: School staffers refused to work with the boy’s psychologist and destroyed records pertinent to the boy’s situation, including documentation showing when and how he was harassed by other students. The suit claimed district employees erred by “punishing Thomas equally or worse than his attackers whenever an assault on Thomas was reported.”

…Tom looked defeated and told his mother that he wasn’t going to be blamed anymore for things he didn’t do…. The next morning, after speaking with her son, Tom’s mother left the house for 20 minutes or so to drop his younger sister off at a sewing class, she testified. When she returned, she found him hanging from a rope strung from the ceiling.

This sort of thing makes me feel soulsick. It is the other side of Columbine. Notice how we’ve never heard of this story, because Tom Maloney chose to direct his desperation at himself. Color me ruthless if you will, but I have far more sympathy for the Columbine killers than I do for the kids who drove them to it.* Klebold and Harris may have become lethal monsters, but they did not do so without significant help from others. In any case, it’s a pity that none of these bullied, suicidal children were homeschooled, as that would have almost surely prevented both tragedies. Read the Anchorage piece and notice how the so-called educators don’t appear to care much about anything except that their indifferent, incompetent posteriors are not held responsible.

The Rocky Mountain News wrote: No matter how exhaustive, the official report will never tell the entire story or measure the deep scars this tragedy left on the victims and the community…. Why? “I think I know why they did it,” the FBI’s Fuselier says. “It was because they were so filled with hate. But the real question is why they had so much hate inside them.”

The kids know why.

* Yes, of course the two killers are the only ones who were responsible for their actions; their suicides argue that they were quite willing to pay the price.