Incite -- (v) 1: give an incentive; 2: provoke or stir up; "incite a riot"; 3: urge on; cause to act
Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Carnival of the Vanities #107
Written by: Beck

When I signed up for INCITE to host the Carnival of the Vanities, I recognized that a lot of work would be involved. Reading Carnivals of the time--it was nearly 4 months ago that I stepped onto the waiting list--I was amazed that you would often see twenty to thirty entries. So you can imagine my surprise upon receiving over fifty Carnival submissions. Unfortunately, that means that for most of the submissions, I won't be able to say more than a sentence in summary, though these fine samples of writing deserve far more. The only alternative, unfortunately, would be to crank out a Carnival so long the posts at the end would likely never see the light of day.

On top of that, a number of my favorite blogs did not make a submission, so I'm exercising the Carnival editors' prerogative to pick a few of the best posts from around the blogosphere. And so, without further ado, I present to you: The 107th Carnival of the Vanities!

Editor's Selections:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usThe first choice for this week's carnival appropriately comes from the site I (among others) will be guest blogging for starting October 7, the always brilliant: Protein Wisdom. Because embracing controversy is fun. If you don't get it, well, you've got plenty of company I'll imagine.

If you read nothing else from this entire Carnival, read this: Roger L. Simon's post The Subject About Which Kerry Dare Not Ever Speak. My partisan stripes are certainly showing through in the selection of that post; nonetheless, it's an important topic (UNSCAM & the diplomatic divide between the United States and continental Europe) regardless of one's political affiliation which deserves serious consideration.

Next we move on to one of the hardest working bloggers I know of, INDC Bill. Keeping with the too-inside-baseball pattern (that, or embracing controversy--you be the judge) I can already see emerging in my editor's picks section, Bill's post likely won't be of too much interest to non-bloggers, but I'm picking it anyway. 'Cuz I'm the editor, and I call the shots.

Next I nominate the master of the Blog Stunt, The Commissar of The Politburo Diktat. Few have done more than he to foster a spirit of community across the blogosphere, so I'm always happy to send him a link when I get a chance. I couldn't decide which of his posts over the past week I liked the best, as all were relevant for different reasons. So for the price of one, you get three posts from him today. Read them all. Now!

Finally, from INCITE's official token liberal on the blogroll--proving we're open minded should anyone harbor doubts--David Anderson of In Search of Utopia offers a handy pre-debate preparation plan. Kidding aside, I'm happy to have this opportunity to point out to the world that Anderson runs a great site & is one of the most reasonable liberals I've met.

International Selections:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usWith the pending election, things going on in the rest of the world tend to become forgotten. It turns out, there are more nations in this world then simply the United States and Iraq. The news, perhaps unsurprisingly, is not especially positive.

From Koranteng's Toli, a long, thoughtful and serious essay on the human tragedy going on in Haiti.

I especially appreciated this post from Strat Speaks Out on a subject I myself have recently discussed, the liberal worship at the cult of Che Gevara is only one example of an all too common--and frightening--phenomenon. For some reason, the political brethren of Jimmy Carter can't get enough of despotic cruel, evil dictators.

Tim Worstall tackles the latest bout of EU insanity--a combination of eroded liberty, infringed freedom, and bureaucratic bundling is crippling the pace of medical research in Europe.

Tex the Pontificator ties the concept of buyers' remorse into the current state of Palestinian-Israeli affairs, with a long look at the history of the situation in that region.

For the post from point2point, I think I'll simply serve up the title & leave it to you, the reader, to figure out the post's contents: Raping Kidnapped Children and Other Surprisingly Popular Pastimes.

In a similar vein, RoguePundit addresses the issue of internet child pornography--a problem spanning across from some of the worlds' poorest nations to some of the wealthiest. I apologize in advance for what that link is going to do to skew your Google search results Rogue.

The always fantastic Foolsblog by Feste offers up a very insightful discussion of anti-Americanism--both at home and abroad.

The always amusing Aaron of the aptly named Aaron's Rantblog offers up the latest in a series of ads for iSlam.

Q&O offers an especially relevant post with Overcivilized. The premise is that the barbarians are always at the gate--so the less willing to get dirty and slit some throats a civilization becomes with time, the more imperiled it is by the barbarians at the gate. What's more, Dale goes on to quote P.J. O'Rourke, one of my favorite authors.

Peaktalk makes the argument that Iraq is no Vietnam.

Israellycool offers a humorous photo essay soliciting employees for UNRWA. If you can't figure out why this is really funny, you really need to watch the news on TV read blogs more regularly.

Domestic Selections:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usRunning a Google image search for the word "domestic" turned up this lovely picture of a latrine, and it just seemed too appropriate to pass up. Incidentally, when I was slotting things into the domestic category, I stuck exclusively with those which had little or nothing to do with the upcoming presidential election.

The Smallest Minority produces an extremely well thought out discussion of gun rights in a critique of the work of Dr. David Hemmingway--an anti-gun rights advocate.

The blog Socialized Medicine presents letters from doctors arguing that much of the reason for high medical costs in America are a result of government regulation.

Greenie Watch attacks the concept of "Smart Growth" vs. "Sprawl."

Personal Reflections:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usOriginally, I was going to toss up a picture of Wonkette with Washingtonienne and call this section "journals" or "diaries" or some such, but frankly, many of these posts are far to insightful and serious to hand off such light treatment. So in stead I tossed up another Zdzislaw Beksinski picture and decided to leave it at that.

In perhaps the most significant of the posts in this section comes from LaShawn Barber addressing what must be an exceptionally challenging situation: living life as a black conservative.

Taken in Hand attempts to answer the age old question: what is it that women want in a man? (It turns out that the answer is not, "Must write for a blog" after all).

Miss O'Hara, meanwhile, attempts to answer yet another age old question: why is it that women don't look for blog authors when seeking a mate? Well, that's not quite the way she puts it, but that's the way I read it. Miss O'Hara's site, incidentally, was one of the first to link to me way back in the day. Thanks!

Blog d'Ellison, in a discussion of American breakfast cuisine, discusses that most sainted of treats: smoked salmon. Evidently also quite useful as a cultural ambassador.

Kiril of Sneakeasy's Joint has a lot of thoughts on Southern California baseball. My only thoughts on the subject: Go Astros!

Da Goddess has a simple yet sincere message for the blogosphere--those who know what she's talking about will understand. From Da Goddess: Thank you.

On Blogging:

Image Hosted by What, you didn't expect me to waste a perfectly good Wonkette picture, did you? The Blogosphere has garnered a lot of attention over the past few months, mostly as a consequence of our coverage of issues surrounding the upcoming elections. Without the blogosphere, after all, there would have been no Rathergate. As a consequence, many in the mainstream media have felt an uncontrollable urge to lash out. Naturally, quite a few bloggers felt the urge to respond in kind. Following are submissions to the Carnival who did just that.

The Eleven Day Empire offers up Bloggers vs. the Mainstream Media, Part the Nth+1. There are a lot of stereotypes about the "typical" blogger, and James takes it upon himself to break them down, one by one.

The Moderate Voice offers: The Media's Disrespect for Bloggers Lives On and On. Big Media is scared, and hasn't yet come to grips with the fact that A) we're here to stay, and B) no amount of smear pieces on their part are going to ruin our credibility. Joe has an awful lot to say on the subject, and if you're a blogger or a media watcher, you should definitely read through it.

And finally, over at MadKane, along with a hefty series of links, a take on the blogosphere is offered... in verse. Go read it, you'll smile.

Just Plain Random:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usAnd now, the penultimate category--submissions which couldn't readily be fit into any other category. And so follows a survey of pieces performed in the key of random.

Andrew Ian Dodge of Dodgeblogium has an announcement to make: he has officially published his first work on paper! With bindings no less! I believe the medium involved is typically known as a "book."

The blog Give Me Spirit Fingers Dammit! offers up the latest in must-own novelty: monogramed toilet paper.

From The Zero Boss, Blogging for Books! Quoting from the original email: In Blogging for Books, I and a monthly guest author sift through blog submissions written on that month's theme. The best-written essayist receives a free, signed copy of the author's book.

Gun Watch has a story about an unarmed man who opened a can of whoopass on a would-be armed robber. Don't you just love heart warming stories like that?

Education Watch has a story asserting that schools have become anti-boy.

Wicked Thoughts has a list of amusing church announcements. My favorite: "Scouts are saving aluminum cans, bottles and other items to be recycled. Proceeds will be used to cripple children."

From the People's Republic of Seabrook, quite possibly the only person in the world to do so, marks the passing of the Montreal Expos.

Election Selections:

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usAnd now, at long last, we come to our final section: posts about the election. I left these for last for two reasons. First of all, it's the longest section, and I felt that it was the most likely to wind up driving away potential readers from ever reaching the other portions of the Carnival. Second, the election is only a month away, and everyone is starting to get a bit burned out on it I think. I myself have been cranking out near daily commentary on the damned thing since the 3rd of March. I cannot wait until the whole thing is over with.

To open things up, let's turn to Dean Esmay's Dean's World wherein he posts his exclusive interview with a member of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth organization. Many have heard too much about this story already, but for political junkies like myself it is an absolute must read. Really.

Ye ol' Watcher of Weasels submits Making the Grade, a take down of John Kerry's "Global Test" for dealing with nations that make naughty. This was a late submission from the watcher intended to replace a previous submission, but I liked 'm both, so I'll also link you to Peak Performance, an analysis of the first Bush-Kerry debate.

Eric, writing for long time favorite of mine Classical Values cranks out a gargantuan fisking for this week's Carnival. Let's just say it involves Dianne Feinstein, the WaPo, and Iraqi interim president Allawi. In other news, I'd like to officially nominate the writers of Classical Values to take over the now vacant Steven den Beste Chair of Blogosphere Essayists.

Beautiful Atrocities presents an amusing outline of all the events surrounding Rathergate.

Strat Speaks Out offers up a rather interesting discussion of the campaign from the paradigm of Style over Substance. That's a woefully unfair abridgment of an excellent post, but I'm running out of room here!

The Big Picture wonders what it is that Kerry's doing right. The myriad things he does wrong are readily apparent, yet he still polls at roughly half of the electorate, so he must be getting something straight.

Brian J. Noggle asks us a simple question.

Espresso Sarcasm offers some presidential debate humor for your consumption. After all, who doesn't love top ten lists?

The Moderate Voice, in his second submission for this Carnival (I let it slide) presents a thorough and insightful analysis of the first Bush-Kerry debate.

Let's Try Freedom makes the argument--which cannot be stressed too often--that most of "campaign finance reform" really just equates to squashed freedom of speech.

Dissecting Leftism offers up "The Leftist 'Community' Myth" for your consumption.

More campaign humor from Attaboy. Take the quiz already.

Eric Berlin asks What is a Flip-Flop? His lengthy answer is worth a look.

Hello, Chapter Two! takes on the issue of Kerry's opposition to nuclear bunker busters.

The Smarter Cop tackles the issue of voter fraud (and tackles Oliver Willis in the process).

THE LAST POST! THAT'S RIGHT! HERE IT COMES! The Key Monk takes aim at a slightly different war the CIA is engaged in: a war with the Bush Administration. I wish him the best of luck with hitting his target.

Well folks, that's it for the 107th edition of the Carnival of the Vanities. I won't be in front of a computer for at least another 12 hours, so if I left you off or something's screwed up... sorry!

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John Beck

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