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[Music clip: From Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, organ version]
01 — Intro. Greetings, ladies and gentlemen! In lieu of Derb TV, which is experiencing technical difficulties, we revert this week — and probably for a few more weeks — to Radio Derb, long known and cherished throughout the length and breadth of the land as an infallible source of those news items that Mr and Mrs America need to know.
Oh sorry, I didn't mean to be heteronormative there. I meant of course Partner A and Partner B in all civil unions recognized in our various states and localities.
Before I put my foot into any more PC doggy poop, let's proceed to the news of the hour.
|02 — Two big political theories, RIP. That noise you've been hearing in the
news background this past few days has been the sound of shovels cleaving earth for the digging of two big graves.
Those graves are being dug for the interment of two great political theories, both of which have been killed stone dead by the events of the past few days.
Theory Number One, long popular with Israeli peaceniks, American paleocons, and leftists everywhere, was the theory that if only Israel were to withdraw from territories it has occupied, then everything in the Middle East would be tickety-boo. The lion would lie down with the lamb, swords would be beaten into plowshares, and so on.
Well, back in 2000 Israel did withdraw from southern Lebanon after 18 years of occupation. Result: The jihadist group Hezbollah moved in and began stockpiling missiles to be fired at Israeli towns. By the time the present trouble started, Hezbollah had over ten thousand of these missiles.
Then last year, after 38 years of occupation, Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip. Result: The jihadist group Hamas moved in and started digging tunnels so that its suicide bombers could infiltrate Israel and blow up kids on buses.
On the evidence it seems that when Israel withdraws from occupied territory, the lion does not lie down with the lamb. The lion just moves in to the now empty Israeli emplacements and gets on the phone to Tehran to place some orders for missiles. Work those shovels, guys.
Theory Number Two, for which we have another team digging a nice deep grave in the cornfield, is the theory — popular with neocons this time — that if only the nations of the Middle East got democracy, then everything would be tickety-boo. Well, let's see how that's working out in practice.
Lebanon got democracy, and in the general election last year a so-called "resistance bloc," mainly a front for Hezbollah, got eighty percent of the vote in south Lebanon and ended up with over a quarter of the seats in Lebanon's parliament.
Then in January this year, the Palestinians had an election and — guess what? Hamas got 44 percent of the vote.
And this is not even to mention the now-unfolding results of democracy in Iraq. Keep those shovels moving, fellas.
If all that sounded a bit smug, you must excuse me. I've been steadfastly pro-Israel, as my archived columns show. In fact the commonest reader email I get on this topic is one accusing me of anti-Arab racism.
I denied that accusation; but yes, I've been deeply skeptical of the ability of Arabs to organize rational modern nations. I've always thought the democracy project was dumb.
Practically nobody agreed with me on both points. My paleo friends told me I'd been brainwashed by Zionists on point (a); my neo-con friends said I was a cranky pessimist for doubting that the yearning for liberty is there in every human heart, just waiting to be summoned into action, which is how they see point (b).
But, you see, I was right on both points. I've been right all along.
Sometimes it just plays to make up your own mind. Score one one for the Cranky Cons.
|03 — The Middle East: We're stuck with it. So, can Israel destroy
Hezbollah? No, of course they can't.
When things happen in the world like this, we armchair commentators pull down our atlases and pore over them to try to get some notions about strategy. The problem is, atlases make everything looks so neat and small.
Told that something or other would ruin the country, Adam Smith replied: "There is a deal of ruin in a country." Well, that's true; and it's also true that there is a great deal of country in a country.
Next time you're on a plane in a window seat, just look down at the landscape passing below you and try to imagine purging it of some popular plain-clothed terrorist group that has thousands of operators and their materiel hidden away in attics and basements, sheds and garages, woods and caves, factories and schools.
Remind yourself of what I noted in a previous segment: that Hezbollah and their pals got eighty percent of the vote in south Lebanon.
Then remind yourself how small Israel is. The Jewish population is less than five and a half million, including West Bank settlers.
Israel can't destroy Hezbollah and nobody else is up to the job either. We're stuck with Hezbollah, and with Hamas too. Which means that this whole dreary business is going to go on for decades yet.
Oh boy. Let's talk about something else.
|04 — Hanky-panky in the Hamptons. A sex scandal — what could be
High up in the ranks of the Beautiful People this past few years have been supermodel Christie Brinkley and her husband, architect Peter Cook. Brinkley is 52 years old and still gorgeous; Cook is five years younger and whatever the heterosexual male equivalent of "gorgeous" is.
Ah, but as one of the Roman authors pointed out, Mother Nature will have her way, try as you might to shut her out.
The particular one of Mother Nature's rules in operation here is the one that says that no matter how gorgeous a 52-year-old woman is in the eyes of her similarly aged husband, a 17-year-old lass with a sweet face, a nice figure, and an air of innocence is gorgeouser.
The lass in this case was Diana Bianchi, a toy store assistant over in swanky Southampton, Long Island. Ms Bianchi, described by the New York Post as "an aspiring singer," just happened to be assembling a Lego model of a cantilevered double bed when Peter Cook walked by and tripped over her outstretched foot.
Impressed by the skill with which this young lady inserted the Lego pieces into each other, Cook persuaded her to put away childish things and go to work for him at his architect firm where she could help him to erect scale models of impressively tall structures all day long.
Ms Brinkley is of course mad as hell, though it's to the couple's two children, aged eight and eleven, that our sympathies should mainly go. No doubt matters will now follow the inevitable course via lawyers and custody fights, two book contracts, and appearances on reality TV.
Meanwhile, Mother Nature is smiling away quietly to herself in the background, murmuring the old rhyme:
|05 — Britain hosts multiculti funeral. Here's a story from the land of warm
beer, spotted dick, and poor dental hygiene.
Thirty-one-year-old Rajpal Mehat, an illegal immigrant from India, was drowned in a London canal back in December. It took a while to find the poor chap's body, and by that time he was in a seriously unpleasant condition.
Now, devout Hindus believe that a corpse should be burned in the open air to release the soul to the sky. It's a common thing for Hindus who die in England to have their bodies shipped to India for open-air cremation. Mr Mehat's body, however, was judged unfit for air transportation. What to do?
Well, his relatives hired a farmer's field in Northumberland. They piled up some nice dry wood and they sent Mr Mehat to Heaven in the traditional way.
Open-air cremation is illegal in England, but multiculturalism now has such a strong grip on the Scepter'd Isle that there is unlikely to be any prosecution.
The English authorities are just thankful for small mercies: Mr Mehat was not married.
|06 — Brits declare foreigners a race. Outrage of the week this week is
another story from across the Pond, where a branch office of the HSBC Bank has been found
guilty of racism and
fined £750 because employee A overheard employee B saying to employee C: "I hate foreigners."
Employee A, the complainer, is a rather pretty woman from Malta, name of Ruby Schembri. Ms Schembri has white skin, reddish-brown hair, and greenish-brown eyes. She is most likely Roman Catholic: Ninety-eight percent of Maltese people are. Employee B, the one who hates foreigners, is a white, blonde English woman named Debbie Jones, confession unknown.
Just exactly where race comes into this picture, I'm not sure; though I am, as everyone knows, hopelessly naïve about these things and should probably undergo some kind of Race Awareness Training to clue me in. Perhaps Roman Catholic brunettes have been declared a race, I wouldn't know … although if they have, I'd better start being a lot nicer to Kathy Lopez.
Anyway, Race Awareness Training, a/k/a PC brainwashing, is exactly what Ms Jones is engaged in right now. When she is through with it, she will no doubt adore foreigners and be thoroughly ashamed of her Britishness.
Boswell said of Dr Johnson that he was, quote, "a true-born Englishman, fully prejudiced against all other nations." That'll get you jail time nowadays — or worse yet, Race Awareness Training.
|07 — Playing the dictator game. Here's the deal.
You're a dictator running some crummy Third World hell-hole. Your hell-hole doesn't have an economy worth speaking of. So how are you going to keep the flow of high-priced Western liquor, E.D. medications, limousines, and shiny electronic toys coming to your pals in the elite, so they don't get unruly and start plotting to overthrow you?
Well, what you do is, you place a bet that the great powers of the world will do absolutely anything to avoid having to take resolute action against you.
So you kick up a little dust: you know, power up a nuclear reprocessing plant, fire off a missile or two, that sort of thing. And you wait for the leaders of the world to come scurrying up to offer you goodies if you will, please, please not do it again.
It's a neat little game. Iran plays it; North Korea plays it. Why should they not play it? It's fun and risk free, especially now that the U.S. Army is tied down chasing jihadis around the back streets of Baghdad. And you get stuff!
I just hope my kids don't follow the news. "Hey Dad, I just broke a window. I'll break a couple more if you don't buy me that bike …"
|08 — Soccer not totally eventless. Last day at work on a job is
always a bit problematic, isn't it? Chances are you already had the farewell party — you know, the one where you get drunk, tell the head
of Accounts Payable that he's a moron, and do that unhygienic thing with the copy machine.
So it's your last day in the office. You mooch around like the spare priest at a wedding, getting on everyone's nerves. You take a last nostalgic look at your cube. You slouch down to H.R. to make sure they've tied up all the loose ends. Then you slip away as soon after lunch as you decently can. It's a melancholy and embarrassing business.
Well, Zinédine Zidane, star player on the French national soccer team and, incidentally, the son of Algerian immigrants, had made it known that the World Cup final was to be his last game, that he was retiring from soccer.
Instead of just slipping away ignominiously though, he went out with a bang — a head bang to be precise, right on the breastbone of Italian player Marco Materazzi.
The London Times got video of the event and hired an expert lip reader to capture the exchange between the two players — the exchange that preceded the head-butt. Apparently Materazzi had called Zidane "a son of a terrorist whore," and then, for good measure, told him to [expletive] off.
Now, as face-to-face encounters go in professional sports, that sounds to me like chump change. I think Zidane just wanted to end his soccer career on a memorable note; and perhaps also to confound all those mean-spirited Americans who claim that a soccer game is just ninety minutes of nothing happening.
|09 — Karl Rove hispanders to The Race. One of the fiercest advocacy groups
for open borders and zero immigration control, at any rate from Central America, is the organization called La Raza, which is Spanish for "The
The Race is, as you might guess from its name, a frankly racist outfit, as well as being slightly to the left of Fidel Castro. According to IRS records, The Race helps to fund another group named MEChA. That stands for "The Chicano Student Movement of Aztlán."
MEChA is even more fanatically racist than The Race. Their official slogan is: "For those in the race, everything; for those outside the race, nothing."
Now, you'd think that organizations as frankly and unashamedly racist as these would be way outside the mainstream of U.S. politics, right? If only. In 2004, the last year I have numbers for, The Race got fifteen million dollars in grants from the federal government — which is to say, out of my and your federal taxes. Since The Race helps to fund MEChA, some of that money — my money, your money — also goes to MEChA.
Perhaps they should adjust their slogan to: "For those in the race, everything; for those outside the race, nothing; for the federal taxpayer, invoices to cover our operating costs."
Anyway, it gets worse. Even if mainstream America tolerates these folk and the federal government subsidizes them, it surely could not be the case, could it, that senior officials of a Republican administration would kiss up to them? Listen and weep.
The Race had a big convention in Los Angeles last week, and guess who showed up? Karl Rove, senior advisor to our President. Our Republican President, who would never permit a racist word to drop from his lips, sent his senior advisor to crawl to an outfit named The Race.
Of course it is deeply, offensively racist of me to have noticed any of this.
|10 — From Russia with zoophilia. Okay, that's enough horror and ugliness.
Here is a much nicer story.
Reaching out to his people, President Vladimir Putin of Russia asked citizens to submit questions on a webcast forum. One question came from a farmer in southern Siberia. The farmer wanted to know if he could please have permission to marry his cow.
Now, you may think this was udder insanity, but this poor farmer finds himself on the horns of a dilemma. What's his beef? Well, all the young women have left his village to go work in the city, said Ivan. He continued plaintively: "I love animals very much and want to ask you when it will be allowed in Russia, as it is in Holland, to marry domestic animals."
Well, you can't accuse Ivan of following the herd. Obviously this is a man determined to steer his own course.
Incidentally, I have no idea whether that is true, what the guy said about Holland; although if it is, I strongly advise viewers to avoid any blind dates that offer to "go Dutch."
Anyway, that's the moos … I'm sorry, I mean the news from Russia this week.
|11 — Signoff. That's it, folks: all the news you need to know from
ever-reliable Radio Derb.
We hope to get Derb TV back on the air in a week or two. We have a dedicated team of top-flight software engineers working day and night on the problem. In the meantime we shall keep you informed and instructed via Radio Derb, the nation's favorite news program, brought to you from the 45th floor of Buckley Towers in the heart of Manhattan.
Try to stay cool in this heat. If your air-conditioning breaks down, I can tell you that the dust cover of Al Gore's latest book makes an excellent improvised hand fan.
[Music clip: More Derbyshire Marches.]