A round-up of news items, articles, columns and blog posts that caught our eye this past week.
Here's some more of that new civility we've been hearing so much about:
So, Team O wants someone to be the front person and spokesperson for thier anti-bullying campaign. So, of course, they tab sex advice columnist, Dan Savage, who pens "Savage Love", to be that person. If you are wondering just what the hell the administration would want to have anything to do with someone who writes this sort of stuff (extreme language warning), join the crowd. Here's Savage speaking at a national journalism conference and getting his 2 minute hate on.
As many as 100 high school students walked out of a national journalism conference after an anti-bullying speaker began cursing, attacked the Bible and reportedly called those who refused to listen to his rant “pansy assed.”
The speaker was Dan Savage, founder of the “It Gets Better” project, an anti-bullying campaign that has reached more than 40 million viewers with contributors ranging from President Obama to Hollywood stars. Savage also writes a sex advice column called “Savage Love.”
Savage, and his husband, were also guests at the White House for President Obama’s 2011 LGBT Pride Month reception. He was also invited to a White House anti-bullying conference.
Savage was supposed to be delivering a speech about anti-bullying at the National High School Journalism Conference sponsored by the Journalism Education Association and the National Scholastic Press Association. But it turned into an episode of Christian-bashing.
Rick Tuttle, the journalism advisor for Sutter Union High School in California, was among several thousand people in the audience. He said they thought the speech was one thing – but it turned into something else.
“I thought this would be about anti-bullying,” Tuttle told Fox news. “It turned into a pointed attack on Christian beliefs.”
Tuttle said the speech was laced with vulgarities and “sexual innuendo not appropriate for this age group.” At one point, he said Savage told the teenagers about how good his partner looked in a speedo.
The conservative website CitizenLink was the first to report about the controversy. They interviewed a 17-year-old girl who was one of students who walked out of the auditorium.
“The first thing he told the audience was, ‘I hope you’re all using birth control,’” she told CitizenLink. “he said there are people using the Bible as an excuse for gay bullying, because it says in Leviticus and Romans that being gay is wrong. Right after that, he said we can ignore all the (expletive deleted) in the Bible.”
As the teenagers were walking out, Tuttle said that Savage heckled them and called them pansy-assed.
“You can tell the Bible guys in the hall they can come back now because I’m done beating up the Bible,” Savage said as other students hollered and cheered. “It’s funny as someone who is on the receiving end of beatings that are justified by the Bible how pansy-assed people react when you push back.”
We remain unaware of what Savage was pushing back against with specific respect to those in the audience who simply no longer wanted to hear his hate-fueled rant.
It gets better, though:
The executive director of the National Scholastic Press Association provided Fox News with joint statement from the Journalism Education Association that was sent to members – after a number of people complained about Savage’s remarks.
“We appreciate the level of thoughtfulness and deliberation regarding Dan Savage’s keynote address,” the NSPA wrote. “some audience members who felt hurt by his words and tone decided to leave in the middle of his speech, and to this, we want to make our point very clear: While as a journalist it’s important to be able to listen to speech that offends you, these students and advisers had simply reached their tolerance level for what they were willing to hear.”
The NSPA said they did not have a prior transcript of Savage’s speech and that wish “he had stayed more on target for the audience of teen journalists.” They also said it provided a “teachable moment” for students.
(ed. note: True. What was taught was that Dan Savage is a unapolgetic asshole.)
As for Savage’s attack on people of faith?
“While some of his earlier comments were so strongly worded that they shook some of our audience members, it is never the intent of JEA or NSPA to let students get hurt during their time at our conventions,” they wrote.
However, not once did the NSPA or the JEA offer any apologies to the students or faculty advisors or anyone else in attendance.
Savage did offer a sarcastic apology “if I hurt anyone’s feelings.”
“But I have a right to defend myself and to point out the hypocrisy of people who justify anti-gay bigotry by pointing to the Bible and insisting we must live by the code of Leviticus on this one issue and no other.”
Tuttle said that he “felt duped” by the event. “There were Christian schools who went to the conference. To have this happen was disappointing and shocking.”
The NSPA said they should have done a better job preparing schools for what to expect.
Preparing the schools? How about the NSPA do the minimal amount of preparation of their own in vetting their speakers?
We are curious just how it is that you prepare high schoolers for a very bitter man who writes vulgar columns regarding advice on sex that are way out of the mainstream of the American public?
Nice work, Team O.
Shane Atwell had a nice catch with respect to the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act:
The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act apparently just cleared the house. Despite Speaker Boehner's (R) promise that he's "from the government and here to help", it has at least one horrible provision. From Ron Paul's site:
CISPA represents an alarming form of corporatism, as it further intertwines government with companies like Google and Facebook. It permits them to hand over your private communications to government officials without a warrant, circumventing well-established federal laws like the Wiretap Act and the Electronic Communications Privacy Act. It also grants them broad immunity from lawsuits for doing so, leaving you without recourse for invasions of privacy. Simply put, CISPA encourages some of our most successful internet companies to act as government spies, sowing distrust of social media and chilling communication in one segment of the world economy where America still leads.
I'm guessing this also means the companies will also be granted immunity from lawsuits based on the privacy provisions of the contracts they sign with their customers. In other words, CISPA is a backdoor out of provisions in all their contracts with users. This is how our corrupt politicians grow the state, by pitting pressure groups against each other. Got too much opposition from Facebook and Google? Throw them a bone and sacrifice the users and the sanctity of contracts.
The other disturbing aspect of the bill is that it promises "voluntary" cooperation between the government and internet companies. In what sense can such data sharing be considered voluntary when the same companies are regulated by dozens of government agencies ready to crucify them if they get uppity?
Private enterprises in bed with the government always leads to conflicts of interest and the outcomes are usually rather unsavory. We have seen the same sort of politics played already with ObamaCare that is not yet fully on the books as the health insurance companies have become effectively wards of the state and will do whatever the Secretary of Health and Human Services "shall determine."
So, what's snopes.com trying to cover up with respect to SCYTL? Sir Charles of Doo Doo economics has the goods, here.
And via Dueling Barstools:
You know, maybe if somebody got laid as a result of Fast and Furious, more people would actually pay attention to a scandal that, unlike the GSA and Secret Service/prostitution scandals, has actually resulted in the loss of life...
President Barack Obama used his White House Correspondents’ Association dinner speech on Saturday evening to take jabs at several dustups plaguing his own administration, but left one scandal — Operation Fast and Furious — out of his bag of jokes.
Obama poked fun at presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the General Services Administration all in one swipe. “Anyway, it’s great to be here this evening in the vast, magnificent Hilton ballroom — or what Mitt Romney would call a little fixer-upper,” he said to laughter and applause. “I mean, look at this party. We’ve got men in tuxes, women in gowns, fine wine, first-class entertainment. I was just relieved to learn this was not a GSA conference.”
The agency’s much-discussed lavish conference in Las Vegas, he said, was “unbelievable. Not even the mind reader knew what they were thinking.”
Obama launched barbs, too, at the Secret Service prostitution scandal.
“I had a lot more material prepared, but I have to get the Secret Service home in time for their new curfew,” he joked.
But although he made room in his set for more than one joke about reports, which first surfaced April 17 at The Daily Caller, that he ate dog meat while growing up in Indonesia, the president made no attempt to get the Washington, D.C. media elites to laugh at Fast and Furious.
That didn’t stop the event’s emcee Jimmy Kimmel from slipping a single joke about the gun-walking scandal into the mix.
“Even some of your fellow Democrats think you’re a pushover Mr. President,” Kimmel said during his stand-up routine, which followed Obama’s. “They would like to see you stick to your guns — and if you don’t have any guns, they would like to see you ask Eric Holder to get some for you.”
Obama forced a smile but didn’t audibly laugh at that joke.
Nothing at all to laugh about.
With respect to government-operated public pension plans, Glenn Reynolds asks this:
See, the thing is, some people say that people aren’t clever enough to plan for their own retirement. But what makes anyone believe that people can then be clever enough to plan for other people’s retirements?
Again, statism is sexy because statism is easy. Why demonstrate any personal initiative and take any risks when you can simply take other people's money?
Secular Apostate has some bad news for a recently-celebrated set of people who get degrees from college that won't pay off their student loans:
I was reading a Reuters article about the paltry crowds that turned out last Wednesday to whine and beg protest student loan policy. Naturally, being a reporter, the Reuters newshound Edith Honan actually interviewed some of these overindulged idiots. And she got some gems. Gems that I will share with you, dear readers.
But first, to “protest” the unfair demand that loan recipients pay the loan back, the young debtors set fire to their debt documents. Children, I have an unpleasant surprise for you. The bank has a copy of those documents, with your Social Security number and signature, on file. You will never be eligible for bankruptcy. Unless you take a government job spraying herbicide or sorting documents, you will be hounded until the day you die or you pay back every last cent, whichever comes first. Burning the pink copy is a sure sign of slackerhood compounded by profound moronicity. In the Museum of Empty Gestures, yours will be placed in the Most Pathetic collection. If you want a place of pride under the rotunda, set yourself on fire.
Read the hilarious interviews at the link.
OK, gang. That's it for today. Will see you all tomorrow.