Indoctrinate U, and today’s items

Indoctrinate U
I wasn’t able to attend the screening, but Mitchell Langbert did: A Classic in the Making

On April 23 and 24 the Tribeca film festival in lower Manhattan, which is continuing through May 6, screened Indoctrinate U, Evan Maloney’s documentary about political correctness in American universities. The film depicts universities run amuck. Fascistic, intolerant leftists attack Asian Republicans, white males, libertarian females, conservative white females, conservative Sikh males (not to mention libertarian black writers and Asian libertarian conservative males). The film is funny, lively and ultimately frightening. Maloney’s delivery is witty and sharp. The film is well-edited. One is riveted to the screen. The interviewees, who include my colleagueKC Johnson and FIRE’s Glen Lukianoff, are articulate and brilliant. The film will not surprise the few conservatives in academe who work among the politically correct majority. Nor will it surprise conservative students who have been subjected to the harassment the film depicts and seen their careers ruined by liberal witchhunters, speech code advocates and a wide range of left-wing jackboots. But the public at large, the broader community, those who believe that students go to Yale, Bucknell, Cal Poly Tech, and their equivalents to be educated will be stunned.

Speaking of academia, Cinnamon posts on Brown University Workshop Speaks to Fear and Loathing in Middle East Studies After 9-11

The only problem is workshop participants are almost uniformly composed of academics who are hostile to the U.S.-led war on terrorism, its ally, Israel, and any efforts via higher education to combat radical Islam on college campuses.

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Thanks to Larwyn for today’s links
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Time for Dictators But No Time for American Generals
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Gaius fisks Naomi
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Patrick sent a nice YouTube of Giuliani in New Hampshire this week,

Patrick also sent McCain surges among New Hampshire conservatives
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Jeremayakovka sends this article, ‘Making War to Keep Peace’ is a fine tribute to Jeane Kirkpatrick

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Update: Don’t miss Cassandra’s NYTimesWatch: The Lynching Of Paul Wolfowitz

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Giuliani, Gagarin, and today’s items

Giuliani writes about My four pillars of American prosperity

1. Reduced spending growth.
2. Lower Tax Rates.
3. Regulatory Reform.
4. Sound monetary policy.

Read it all.

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The Kremlin has vetoed a move to launch a fresh investigation into the death of Yuri Gagarin. Gagarin, the first man in space, died in 1968, and the Kremlin’s still covering up.

I must remember to ask Maria if there’s a word in Russian for “transparency”.

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Following Second bloggers’ conference call with Sen. John McCain, I found this article at Opinion Journal, McCain’s Finest Hour
Leadership sometimes means bucking public opinion

The difference is not merely of consistency but of conviction. Mr. McCain is making clear he understands that leadership is often by nature unpopular. He has been equally clear about the consequences of U.S. withdrawal from Iraq–“chaos” and “genocide” were among the scenarios he painted for Mr. Pelley.

He has also shown that he understands the moral obligation his vote authorizing the war entailed, which was to see it through to victory, or at least until the conclusion becomes inescapable that victory is impossible. With General David Petraeus only recently installed in Baghdad and his surge strategy not yet fully under way, Mr. McCain realizes that we are nowhere near being able to draw that conclusion.

Betsy comments,

What struck me is how the media coverage is so set on framing McCain’s speech as a political move. The first paragraph of the Washington Post article frames McCain’s speech as an attempt to save his faltering campaign

The WaPo is wrong, and McCain is acting out of conviction.

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In a lighter mode,
You might be able to legally download Beatles songs; here’s why.

And don’t miss the WaPo’s Peeps contest: “No more wire hangers!!” (#15)

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Debate, or invective?

The big news around the blogs (and I include Drudge) is Ann Coulter.

I’ve never liked Ann Coulter because for as long as I’ve been aware of her existence she’s been one of the people lowering the bar of political discourse. She’s a very intelligent woman, and, while some think she’s crazy, I believe that not only she’s not crazy and she knows exactly what she’s doing, she’s cashing in on it. The picture I took of the people standing in line for an autographed copy of her book at CPAC doesn’t start to show how many were in line to buy her book:

To give you an idea, the exhibit room had been converted from the indoor parking area and was approx. 100′ x 200′. The line at the point where I took the picture had started 300′ away, and extended another 100′ behind the last person on the left in the picture. Now, I know for a fact because the line formed right in front from where I was sitting that the people in line got in line BEFORE Coulter even started her speech on Friday. But this is not the first time Coulter’s done her schitck at a CPAC.

I am sure Edwards’s campaign people are getting donations because of Coulter’s “careless” remark.

The way I see it, you either do invective and vituperation, or you don’t.

As Mama said, while talking about other matters,

weak thinking is contagious

and name calling and invective are symptoms of weak thinking.

Now, Coulter was not debating anyone. She was just giving a speech to a very friendly audience. It wasn’t as if she got carried away in the heat of a debate. This was not the first time she’s addressed a large audience, so it’s not as if her nerves got the best of her. As I said, she knew what she was doing – weak thinking can be very profitable when the royalty checks arrive, too.

Weak thinking is contagious because it’s easy. It’s a heck of a lot easier than looking at the world and trying to find out what is going on, and what the issues are.

The day before I attended a real debate: Dinesh D’Souza and Robert Spencer debated “Terrorism: Is Religious Extremism or Secular Extremism the Problem?”

You can listen to the debate at the CSPAN website (click on Conservative Political Action Conference). The debate was brief but substantive and lively.

Even in the circus atmosphere of CPAC, there was real debate. There was an exchange of ideas. And lo and behold, no one insulted anyone. The audience was much smaller than for Coulter, and the lines for Dinesh’s or Dr Spencer’s books were much shorter. Lively as the debate was, both men remained civilized to each other. After the debate I had an opportunity and complimented each of them on their debate.

A few hours before Coulter spoke I attended Giuliani’s speech. This main theme was that America is a country of ideas. The ideas that Giuliani espouses are personal responsibility, strength as a nation, and America’s role in the world. Giuliani, who took on the Mafia and prosecuted terrorists before he was mayor of New York City, is a man of clear, strong thinking.

And he was sensational.

He didn’t have a single solitary volunteer handing out Rudy posters, stickers, or buttons, but the ballroom was packed to the rafters and the people who coudln’t get in would have filled another ballroom that size. He didn’t schmooze with the bloggers, even when I wish he had. He didn’t give a stump speech like the other candidates, he came to explain what he’s about.

He came, gave his speech, and left.

But by clearly explaining his ideas, he gave people something to take home and think about. One of the things people like me will think about is that Giuliani’s message will appeal to a large number of Americans, consevatives or not conservatives.

So here’s the situation:
– The conservatives can continue having Coulter as a CPAC guest and have a jolly good time as they amuse themselves with her insults and attacks. By doing so, as Steve put it,

This woman is doing things for the Democrats they could never begin to do for themselves.

If they choose that option, they lose all right to complain when Dean, Hillary, et al, sling the basests insults at them. All the while, they’ll drive the Republican party to sure extinction. Look at McCain: he stayed away, and rumor has it that he might do a third-party run. That will be disastrous. The Elephant will become as extinct as its genetic relative, the mamooth.

– Or the conservatives can bring more clear thinkers who can raise the level of the political discourse, and actually win elections.

It’s up to them.

Update: The American Mind

One aspect of CPAC is all the college kids running around. Many idolize Coulter. Her lack of intellectual substance sets a poor example for those people to take back to their schools.

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Giuliani was sensational

I pushed my way into managed to get in the Paladian ballroom just in time to listen to Giuliani. This is when my double media/attendee credentials paid off.

The crowd waiting outside was at least as large as the crowd inside. Everybody wanted to listen to him live. Unlike Romney and Brownback, Giuliani doesn’t have a gauntlet of volunteers handling out stickers and posters. Actually, aside from the speech I haven’t seen anyone handing out RG stuff and I’ve been here two days.

George Will introduced Giuliani, and the crowd entusiastically rose to their feet in applause

Giuliani speaks in a very matter-of-fact conversational tone which I greatly welcome after hearing a lot of haranguing. His record as mayor of NYC, his message that America is a country of ideas, and his vision for a strong America went over very very well with the crowd.

He was sensational.

Will the social conservatives go with Romney? Probably. The question is, can he win a national election?

Update, Saturday March 3: The NYT is lying, Ace.
I’ve never seen anything like it, even last year

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