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Abbreviated Pundit Round-Up

December 24th, 2009, 05:12 pm admin Leave a comment Go to comments

Your one stop pundit shop:

David Broder just wishes the health care reform bill could be even a little bit bipartisan.

E.J. Dionne says that both the economy and cultural issues went into a a recession this year:

The most important transformation occurred on the right end of politics. For now, the loudest and most activist sections of the conservative cause are not its religious voices but the mostly secular, anti-government tea party activists.

Especially revealing is the re-emergence of former House majority leader Dick Armey, a prime mover behind the tea parties and a longtime critic of the religious right. He once said that James Dobson of Focus on the Family and his allies were a “gang of thugs” and “real nasty bullies.”

Dick Armey would know.

William Daley warns the Democratic Party to move to the center. Apparently it’s never too early to begin the usual, centrist concern trolling.

Nicholas Kristof shares his idea of giving the perfect gift.

Alan Kuperman has a cheerful, holiday message:

Tehran’s rejection of the original proposal is revealing. It shows that Iran, for domestic political reasons, cannot make even temporary concessions on its bomb program, regardless of incentives or sanctions. Since peaceful carrots and sticks cannot work, and an invasion would be foolhardy, the United States faces a stark choice: military air strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities or acquiescence to Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons.

The risks of acquiescence are obvious.

Ann Northup says that the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act is a:

… study in the law of unintended consequences. The new law reduced the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s longstanding discretion to act in response to genuine risks, substituting instead the rigid, broad-brush, and unscientific judgment of Congress.

Daniel Henninger is more petty than usual in his criticism du jour of the President. Not about anything in particular, just a gleeful spiel where he hopes for failure.

Cal Thomas digs deep to be offended today:

Apparently not content with his congressional majority that wishes to force Americans on a long march to health care disaster, President Obama has invoked the name of Jesus to broadcast his gospel of spreading around the wealth.

Speaking Monday afternoon to a group of children from a Northeast Washington Boys & Girls Club, the president delivered a minisermon on “why we celebrate Christmas.” He asked the children if they knew. One piped up and said, “the birth of baby Jesus.”

So, what was the President’s blasphemous response?

The president spoke of what Jesus “symbolizes for people all around the world,” which, he said, “is the possibility of peace and people treating each other with respect.” Then, in the best tradition of a community organizer, the president said Jesus is about “doing something for other people.” Even the “three wise men” were invoked to support the president’s idea of wealth redistribution: “These guys … have all this money, they’ve got all this wealth and power, and they took a long trip to a manger just to see a little baby.”

What conclusion should be drawn from that journey? The president told the children that “it just shows you that because you’re powerful or you’re wealthy, that’s not what’s important. What’s important is … the kind of spirit you have.”

Uhhhh ….

Cliff Garboden wants you to have a twisted little Christmas:

My childhood Christmas memories include a three-foot-diameter silver-plastic wreath with a red Styrofoam reindeer leaping through its center that my father won as a door prize at some neighborhood bar. The thing was beyond garish, way past hideous. It redefined tacky, and Pop knew it. So each December, we faithfully hung it above the couch, right below the likewise traditional/likewise low-taste aluminum-foil “Happy Holidays’’ sign. Sometimes we hung beer cans on our Christmas tree.

Mostly we did these things to tease my mother, who, we sensed, had confused Christmas with a religious occasion fraught with sacred traditions …

As an adult, with a family and living room of my own, I’ve done my best to keep those values alive. When my son, Phil, was about 2, we sent out a photo card showing him trashing a miniature manger display with a two-headed-dragon action figure.

Sacrilege? I beg your tinsel-tangled pardon. As far as celebrating the birth of Christ is concerned, the sacrilege boat sailed a long time ago – long before “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer’’ retired the label.Look at it this way: whatever its one-time significance, Christmas is largely a secular celebration reliant on packaged traditions – talking cards, inflatable lawn snowmen, special-edition M&Ms – contrived to stimulate the marketplace. But why buy when you can do it yourself? Who wants to celebrate someone else’s holiday? Do it your way and steal Christmas back from the holiday hucksters.

… So trim your tree with travesty; deck your halls with disrespect; croon your own carol. Embrace the season without fear of breaking any molds. Celebrate December 25 as if you owned it. Christmas is for everybody, but it doesn’t have to be the same for everybody.

I wonder how many complaints the Boston Globe will receive about this one …

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