Friday, September 10, 2010

Good Reads/Random Cool Sites (9/9/2010)

It's hard out there for a sane conservative. Daniel Larison keeps trying to make reality-based arguments. I wonder if anybody on his side is listening. This time he takes on an absurd article by Dinesh D’Souza.

Explaining opposition to the "Ground Zero Mosque" community center and mosque to be built two blocks away from the future site of the Ground Zero commercial buildings and shopping mall: "Tolerance for minorities tends to wane when the country is at war with co-religionists of the minority group, during periods of economic decline, and during election struggles when politicians can use the issue as a way to mobilize the electorate."

On the Koran burning (or not) nutjob, Rick Pearlstein says the real problem is the media:
The problem is that elite media gatekeepers have abandoned their moral mandate to stigmatize uncivil discourse. Instead, too many outlets reward it. In fact, it is an ironic token of the ideological confusions of our age that they do so in the service of upholding what they understand to be a cornerstone of civility: the notion that every public question must be framed in terms of two equal and opposite positions, the "liberal" one and the "conservative" one, each to be afforded equal dignity, respect — and (the more crucial currency) equal space. This has made the most mainstream of media outlets comically easy marks for those actively working to push public discourse to extremes.

A 15-year-old American girl ran away with her online boyfriend to Brazil, where a court bizarrely gave the boy's uncle temporary custody. But here's the money quote from the girl herself:
"I definitely do not want to go back. I'd rather jump off a bridge with sharks and piranhas in the water, with meat tied to my neck, than go back there," she said. "Obviously, they don't care how I feel. I'm happy here."
You gotta love 15-year-olds.

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