The American Spectator has a first rate article tweaking the attempt to Blame Hoover for the actions of Bill Moyers during the LBJ era:

The Washington Post’s scoop, and Moyers’s non-denial denial, regurgitates a familiar excuse: Hoover did it. In this time-worn script, the FBI director plays the role of Mephistopheles, with various liberal presidents cast as the innocent with the pesky devil upon his shoulder.

He goes through the litany of the Democratic/liberal and concludes thusly:

J. Edgar Hoover is necessary to square the soaring liberal rhetoric on civil liberties with the atrocious civil liberties records of liberal presidents. With an ideology extolling civil liberties crashing into its record of smashing civil liberties, ideologues reshape the facts to fit the ideology. The blame-Hoover template asks readers to believe that the president takes orders from the director of the FBI rather than the reverse. It portrays the world-class arm-twister Lyndon Johnson as a man prone to crying uncle, Woodrow Wilson as secretly opposing his administration’s policies, and the Kennedys acceding to electronic surveillance on Martin Luther King only for his own protection.

If Hoover didn’t exist liberal authors would need to invent him.

Unrelated thought, would you like the idea of Hoover in charge of homeland security right now? I would.

We can’t be surprised when we see stories like this:

The Tibetan New Year, or Losar, is normally the most festive holiday of the year, when Tibetans burn incense, make special dumplings and set off fireworks. But this year, Tibetans have declared a moratorium on celebrating their own holiday, saying they will instead observe a mourning period for people killed last year during protests against Chinese rule.

Amazing and I thought everyone loved a holiday!

“Instead of the usual celebrations marked by singing, dancing and other festivities, silence will be observed and butter lamps will be lit in the temples and homes to pray for the deceased,” they announced in a statement last month.

The tactic appears to be driving Chinese authorities crazy. They’re countering with their own campaign of forced merriment, organizing concerts, pageants, fireworks, horse races, archery competitions.

And you VILL haf fun or else:

At Beijing’s Central University for Nationalities, Tibetan students who had applied last year for permission to hold a Losar celebration informed the university recently that they wished to cancel. But the university told them that the party must go on, said a university source who asked not to be quoted by name.

“Celebrating is compulsory,” he said.

And ve haf vays of making you party:

On Feb. 14, a 39-year-old Tibetan monk set off a furor when he walked through a public market in the Tibetan plateau’s Lithang county carrying a photograph of the Dalai Lama and chanting, “No Losar.” Hundreds of people reportedly joined the protests, which continued into the next two days, according to the Dharamsala-based Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy. The group said that Chinese police detained 21 people, some of whom were badly beaten, and that the county has been locked down for the holiday.

Reports say that as many as 20,000 additional soldiers and paramilitary troops have been deployed in Tibetan areas and that in Qinghai province, village leaders were threatened with arrest if they urged people not to celebrate the holiday.

Well its a good think that we are concerned about human rights, aren’t we:

Clinton told reporters covering her tour of Asian nations that human rights violations by China should not stand in the way of cooperation between the two powers on financial, environmental and security crises, The Washington Post (NYSE:WPO) reported.

And we all know how softplaying human rights worked with the Olympics:

Well, advocates of granting the Olympic Games to China all said that having the Games would force the PRC to liberalize. It would be good for human rights, people said. Even Chinese authorities themselves said that the Games would cause them to liberalize!

That was the great selling point.

And what happened? Not only did the Games not have a liberalizing effect; they had the opposite — moving the PRC to crack down all the more. I documented this extensively in a five-part series on this site last August. You can find it in my archive, here.

What a surprise, as the old Cox and Forkum cartoons say: “I’m a communist dictator you fool!”

Update: Darren Hutchinson notices other interesting aspects.

Joe and Mika are back together, the world is right again:

7:05 a.m. Joe nails it on the Hollywood phony rebel stuff.

7:10 a.m. They talk about unfunded mandates. They note that Jindel has actually read the bill, not sure if ARNULD has.

7:15 a.m. Politically smart to take the money if you want to stay Governor. Smart to reject it if you want the GOP nomination.

7:17 a.m. The unions must know they are losing the fight for card check since their ads are denying that the secret ballot is removed. They claim it becomes the “workers choice” to remove the secret ballot.

7:24 a.m Did a BBC reporter just say that she wants to hear real economists confirm this is good?

7:27 a.m. 40% of GDP, lets play Swedish stimulus.

7:33 a.m. You guys are wild having fun like that. Social security needs to be addressed but its smaller than the heath care stuff say WH budget guy.

7:41 a.m. Will the left be more of a problem for Obama?

7:42 a.m. Todd: The democrats have done a great job demagoguing Social security over the years.

7:46 a.m. Todd: Retirement? We are going to work until we die.

7:57 a.m. John Zigler on Morning Joe, it will be hard to ignore his film after this.

7:58 a.m. Two Morning Joe quotes in the film.

8:01 a.m. Compelling and new story? So was Palin are you suggesting that Palin wasn’t?

8:03 a.m. Mika, she hurt yourself. Example what do you read question. I think that’s a fair point.

8:04 a.m. They were trying to trap her, says Ziegler points to the documentary. They are hitting him hard, but they are being fair.

8:05 a.m. Pat askes if the media was in the tank and what particular networks were. They don’t let him answer and tease Pat for the question, THAT was funny.

8:05 a.m. We will watch the movie and have you back. I thought this was the fairest hearing outside of Fox he will get.

8:09 a.m. Mika gave Joe an opening to talk more about Ziegler and he passed; interesting.

8:12 a.m. The Gibbs saying he doesn’t know what he is talking about clip and it looks like the Mika-Paris Hilton business.

8:38 a.m. Harry Reid: This is going to stimulate the economy republican governors helped pass this.

8:40 a.m. Reid: It’s not Nationalization, Brokaw: Yes it is. Reid: There are a lot of good things going on, the government has always been involved in the private sector

It appears that the Obama administration has managed to stimulate at least one sector of the economy:

Firearms sales have soared the past couple of months, and the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) attributes this to concerns about incoming lawmakers.

A recent poll done by Southwick Associates, which specialize in economic and business statistics related to fish and wildlife, revealed that 80 percent of respondents said they expect it will become more difficult for them to purchase firearms under the current administration. Less than 1 percent indicated they expect gun purchases to become less difficult.

Increases in firearm sales since the November election are a strong indicator these polls are correct. The NSSF cited data from the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which showed a 24 percent increase in firearms purchaser background checks for the month of December 2008 over the prior December.

A friend of mine hit a gun store just across the NH border said the place was very busy and the owner said his sales were way up.

Hey and these support manufacturing jobs too the best type.

I was bemoaning the lack of Arthur votes and viola the administration delivers:

Detainees being held at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan cannot use US courts to challenge their detention, the US says.

The justice department ruled that some 600 so-called enemy combatants at Bagram have no constitutional rights.

Hot Air notices and grins:

Remember how the Left considered Bush a war criminal for taking this exact position? I’d like to see how they square the circle with Obama now. A few like Glenn Greenwald will rip Obama on principle, but the rest will suddenly discover the reasonableness of detaining terrorists and treating them not like burglars but like enemy combatants who have themselves violated Geneva Conventions through their terrorism.

Just as we did in the George Bush administration.

Pair this with the Gitmo news and Arthur gets that needed hit. Carter 9 Arthur 4.

Dissenting Justice continues with his honorable style in comment:

My purpose for engaging this subject arises from my belief that the Left must hold consistent positions and that it must rethink the uncritical approach it took with respect to Obama during the Democratic primaries and the general-election campaign. If McCain (or probably even Clinton) had won the election and began validating Bush’s policies, my fellow liberals would condemn him as Bush III.

In order for our arguments to have legitimacy, we must remain consistent or explain why we shift. If progressives now believe that they overreached in condemning Bush, they should make this clear. If progressives simply wanted to drum Republicans out of power, they have made a mockery of the very values they claim to embrace. Criticism and consistency, rather than partisan defense of “our” candidate, can permit greater accountability. Silence and acquiescence do not. I hope I am not the lone progressive who sees this.

No Kryten for him.

First (Dec 3) there is the known unspoken reality:

You can take this to the bank: Any successful attack on American soil during an Obama administration is going to be wholly owned by not only that administration but the Democratic party.

Next (Jan 16) there is the quiet acknowledgment:

“Obama is now saying how difficult it is going to be to close Gitmo, he is now seeing the same intelligence that President Bush has seen for the last 6 years.”

Then (Jan 25) the ground is prepared:

One would think that the media wants to give cover to the new administration in case it takes say the first terms to decide what to do with these oppressed individuals, dangerous terrorists. It will be interesting to see what happens.

And lo and behold now the Obama administration is telling us that all those stories about Gitmo being the Gulag of our times were just…stories:

A Pentagon report requested by President Obama on the conditions at the Guantánamo Bay detention center concluded that the prison complies with the humane-treatment requirements of the Geneva Conventions. But it makes recommendations for improvements including increasing human contact for the prisoners, according to two government officials who have read parts of it.

Glenn Reynolds notes;

So, kinda like the Katrina stuff, this Guantanamo stink was all just a bunch of political propaganda?

The Other McCain goes snark:

“This is a remarkable achievement,” the president told a press conference Friday. “A mere four weeks ago, Guantanamo Bay was a human-rights catastrophe such as the modern world had never seen. Yet today, through the power of Hope, we have succeeded in making this facility a shining examplar of freedom, a beacon of Change admired throughout the world.”
The amazing transformation, Obama told reporters, would not have been possible without the “tireless labors” of the staff of the newly-created federal Department of Unicorns and Rainbows. . . .

Now if they had talked to Josh who served there like I did years ago they would have already known this. I now wait to see if the left goes Kryten, or retracts their previous comments.

Update Volokh notices:

In the past, objecting to a Gitmo-Gulag comparison was evidence of a “withered moral sensibility,” but I suspect we’re allowed to reject such false equivalencies now.

Via Glenn this Kos diary on the cartoon nonsense is pretty good but the best part of it is at the end:

A while back, I wrote a diary about Warren, who I met while canvassing for Obama in southern Fairfax County. Warren was well into his 70’s and white. He began our conversation by informing me, quite bluntly, that he was voting for McCain because of “the lazy coloreds on welfare”. In spite of his comment, I engaged him. We talked for an hour. He eventually said, “That Obama is smart as a whip”, asked me for a pamphlet outlining Obama’s positions on the issues, and told me he had some thinking to do. You know what several people here on DailyKos said? That I was wrong for talking to the guy after he used the word colored. That I should have given him a lecture on how negative and hurtful the term is. Some people were.. yes… outraged.. that I didn’t tell Warren then and there that he was out of line. And this would have helped then candidate Obama… how? This would have helped me… how? This would have helped my country… how?

This doesn’t make Obama a better candidate but if the other side can persuade people in legitimate discussion then it is fine. It is similar to my conversation with a Quaker protesting at a Palin rally. This is exactly the way political speech should work.

Dan Greenberg uses that term to describe President Obama:

In his day, Ronald Reagan was called “the teflon President” by his detractors, because they felt that criticisms never stuck to him, but somehow always slid off into oblivion. Well, we are now witnessing the birth of a new concept, that of “the SuperTeflon President”, whose very existence repels all criticisms before they even come near him, and vaporizes them out of popular consciousness. It is a remarkable phenomenon.

It’s not super teflon its something worse:

Item via Baseball Crank: Reporters complaining about any critique of the president:

Mike Lupica had a column this morning weeping bitter tears over his shock and hurt that people are criticizing Barack Obama. Amazing, when you think about it, that the President of the United States should receive criticism. It’s such a novel concept.

This was probably the funniest line in the piece:

Once, 100 days was the mythical grace period for a new President. This one doesn’t get five minutes. In the process, he finds out that Washington is even lousier and meaner with partisanship than he knew before he got there.

You would almost think, from reading this, that Obama really did just get there. Not that he’d been a United States Senator the last four years

Item via Big Hollywood : Comics unable to joke about him:

Alex Rodriguez (Letterman, Leno, Kimmel), the recession (Letterman, Leno, Ferguson) and the octuplets (Letterman, Leno, Kimmel) are the most popular topics right now. Meanwhile, the shows still struggle to find a handle from which to grab the new administration.

Leno hit one fairly squarely: He said that Congress commemorated George Washington throwing a silver dollar across the Potomac by tossing $700 billion down a rat hole. Conan and Kimmel only told one political joke. Granted Conan is closing down “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” (his last show is this Friday), and much of the show was devoted to running old clips, tearing up the set, and saying goodbye to the masturbating bear. Jimmy Kimmel said that Obama thanked Republicans for their support on the stimulus package by sending a jar of peanuts to each of them — and this is how many of the Late Nights seem to be approaching the administration right now, by making jokes about Republicans trying to ruin it all.

Item: via Gateway Pundit: A person with an anti-obama gets special treatment in OKC:

…don’t criticize Dear Leader or you may get arrested.

An Oklahoma man was pulled over for taping an anti-Obama sign on his vehicle.
Later, the secret service searched the man’s home because of his blasphemous sign against His High Holiness.

Item via Instapundit: Criticism of the president disappears from stories:

So I linked to a story on high school students skeptical about Obama’s stimulus speech. Now the story has the same headline, but the quotes are missing, replaced by a bunch of feelgood talk about how excited everyone was to have Obama in town. But you can find the original story here. And here’s the Google Cache. Some difference, huh? I emailed the reporter, Hayley Ringle, to ask what happened. (Bumped).

UPDATE: The Google Cache now shows the new story. No response to my email yet. I saved screenshots, though, and of course there’s the Drudge capture.

Item via Michelle Malkin: Protests in Seattle, Denver and Mesa against the president drawing hundreds and thousands of people but no media:

My syndicated column reports on the growing, grass-roots movement against porkulus/spending binges/the entitlement culture from Seattle to Denver to Mesa, Arizona and beyond. Why aren’t you hearing about it in the MSM? Because it doesn’t fit the victim mentality/government savior narrative. We don’t exist, remember?

Well, more of you non-existent rebels will be gathering in Overland Park, Kansas tomorrow, Saturday, at Rep. Dennis Moore’s office (D-KS) at 10 am.

What is most scary is the mentality behind this. It reminds me of a line from one of C. S. Forester’s Hornblower books Flying Colours

Hornblower bowed, but as the Colonel remained unbending he stiffened to attention. He could recognize that type of man at once—the servant of a tyrant, and in close personal association with him, modeling his conduct not on the tyrant’s but on what he fancied should be the correct behaviour of a tyrant, far out-Heroding Herod

I can’t really see the difference between this cult of personality, the Legionaries of Christ one or the Fr. Kennedy in Australia.

How long can this be kept up? Well how long did the media pretend that the John Edwards story didn’t exist?

I teased the Reculsive leftist a little because she didn’t notice the outrage of the right and Christians over the beheading in Buffalo and lack of coverage thereof. She however hits it out of the park with this one:

For many commenters on the web, it is apparently impossible to condemn this nightmare without hastening to add that American culture has plenty of its own home-grown brand of misogyny, and it’s therefore “intolerant” to notice the particular lethalness of the honor-shame paradigm in some non-Western cultures. You know the argument: America is full of sexism and the commodification of women and our own gendered violence, so we have no business even talking about women’s rights.

If you’re a habitué of the progressive blogosphere, this line of thought is probably so familiar that you take it in without blinking.

She sees it as woman’s rights vs human rights and argues that they are same thing:

But for me, as a feminist, women’s rights are human rights. I am not an apostle for American culture, which is certainly far from perfect; I am an advocate for women. When I criticize honor killings or sharia law or any of the other non-Western abuses of women, I’m not speaking from a standpoint of cultural chauvinism. The ground I occupy is one of fundamental human rights for all women: freedom of action, of self-determination, of bodily integrity; freedom from violence and oppression and subjugation; freedom to be educated, to work, to love, to have children (or not); freedom to participate fully in life as first-class citizens. I view and judge every society on earth through that lens, including my own.

But by the same token, it doesn’t work to simply advocate for a universal ideal of women’s rights without inquiring too closely into the specific cultural obstacles to achieving that ideal. The devil, as ever, is in the details. We cannot unpack the situation of an abused wife in a conservative Christian community, for example, unless we understand the particular social and religious codes at work. We can’t stop honor killings unless we know why they happen — and I mean exactly why they happen. What are the social and religious codes at work there? What is the psychology of the people who do this? What drives them, what sustains them, what potential punishments and rewards are in the offing? I wrote on Tuesday that “we must be like doctors fighting disease, seeking to identify precisely the pathogens involved.” If we’re serious about ending the oppression of women, nothing less will do.

She does ignore the real possibility that people writing are afraid of getting ones head cut off but other than that omission this is about as solid as it gets.