Today’s Phrase for Latin Lovers

Rex in Regno suo superiores habet Deum et Legem.

Translation:
The King in his Realm hath two superiors: God and the Law. -- Henry Care (1646-1688) on English liberties and the Magna Carta

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Ancient History

|Pop Culture | Prudence Potpourri

Movie Review: Act of Valor

Once upon a time, Hollywood loved to splash all that made America great across the silver screen. It made our heroes larger than life, made the whole world look upon us with awe, envy and desire. We were the strong and the brave, striving to do the right thing, fighting the good fight. In times of trouble, Hollywood cheered us and rallied us, kept the home fires burning.

Then came Vietnam, and suddenly the men that put their lives on the line for us were no longer treated as heroes—they were barely even treated with respect. Not much has changed in the nearly 50 years since then. Hollywood lost touch with the common man. It went from being cheerleader to scold and naysayer.

Therefore, it’s a refreshing experience to see a movie in which America’s military is portrayed with pride. Act of Valor is one of those rare films that isn’t ashamed to be patriotic. Yet it’s not sugar-sweet; it doesn’t make battle pretty.

We go on a couple of missions with the SEALs, during which they operate with skill, precision, professionalism and honor. The incredibly difficult, tense missions pit them against tough, ruthless opponents. The SEALs don’t waver for a moment. They do their job, without apology. The film is made without apology.

While the actors were Hollywood amateurs yet military professionals (real-life active-duty Navy SEALs), they performed quite well. Some of the dialog came across as a bit hokey, a little stilted, but that was easily forgiven, in that the film was much more action-based than dialog-focused, letting the guys do what they do best.

The filmmakers packed the movie with action from start to finish. The audience was thrown into the adrenaline and confusion of a firefight, as the SEALs on screen achieved their objectives calmly and purposefully, with awesome firepower, using much of the latest weaponry and surveillance tools.

Throughout the film, the families of the sailors aren’t far from their minds or the minds of the audience. Before the men go off to battle, they say they have to make everything right at home so they have no distractions in the field. America’s military families can take pride in knowing their sacrifices, their strength and contributions, were well represented in the script.

If the movie had a downside, it was the portrayal of whom we were fighting. The terrorists were not Middle Eastern bad guys. Instead it was an odd assortment of two Russian kingpins (and a handful of babushka seamstresses sewing suicide vests), Costa Ricans, Mexicans and a few Filipinos thrown into the mix. The movie has drawn some criticism because one of the Russians, the billionaire money man funding the terrorist operation, is called out in one line of dialog as being Jewish. Islamic terrorism commentators Debbie Schlussel, Bookworm and Pamela Geller claim this makes the movie anti-Semetic. I disagree. It wasn’t a central point of the film.

I do agree it is rather stupid to make the financier of Islamic jihad a Jew. Would radical Muslims even want to take Jewish money to pay for their supposed way to heaven? I rather doubt it. By inserting this one line (“But you’re a Jew”), the filmmakers ask the audience to suspend disbelief that the money man is so down with the cause that the Muslims could overlook their religious animosity. But that premise isn’t supported at all. For one, the head Muslim honcho is a Chechen convert to Islam. No lifelong Muslim takes part in directing the operations. We’re told the Russian Jew and the Russian Muslim convert have joined forces because they were friends back in childhood. Yet they don’t seem to like each other, and they never give the audience any common goal that has now brought them together after all these years.

In fact, the billionaire tries to back out, saying he doesn’t want to be directly involved anymore though he’ll keep paying for the plans in motion. We’re never told why this billionaire, who has made his rubles as a drug smuggler, would benefit from blowing up Americans. Throughout the first part of the movie, we are left to assume he is a radical Islamist too. Later, when the Rob Reiner-looking SEAL senior chief confronts him on his yacht and mentions he is Jewish, it makes no sense.

It’s just all so preposterous, the Russians’ backstory, that it is easy to dismiss as lousy scriptwriting and forget it all when the action soon retakes the screen. And that’s the last we see of the inexplicable Mr. Russian Jew Islamic Jihadist.

Schlussel, Geller and Bookworm seem to be upset that anyone engaged in terrorism could possibly be Jewish. But this guy didn’t seem very religious or very bright. (From the start, I was wondering how in the world this greasy-haired hippie could have possibly amassed a billion dollars, even in a corrupt Russia.) I could see someone who was obsessed with making money by any means could associate themselves with terrorism if they were gonna make money off of it, but this guy was funding it, not profiting from it, thereby negating that angle (and potential charge of pushing a negative Jewish stereotype).

But I ask Schlussel, Geller and Bookworm, why should Jews be excluded from being the bad guys? Are all Jews perfect angels, never driven by baser motives? Wouldn’t it be anti-Semetic to say Jews can’t be treated like everyone else? Be bad guys in action movies? Granted we would all prefer bad guys that make sense in the constructed scenario….

If I had to guess, I’d say Obama’s Defense Department had a lot to say about whom the bad guys were to be. The people that Obama has spent most of his presidency bowing to, giving apologizing speeches to, relinquishing all American military superiority to, attempting to ignore all their connections to violent terrorism, are the people that are completely left out of the movie: radical Islamist Middle Eastern Arabs.

At first glance, it seems surprising the Defense Department consented to make Russians the bad guys, no matter how bumbling and disconnected to true Islamism they were. Obama has been courting the Russians since Day One, unilaterally giving up key strategies and forsaking our allies for them. But one bad guy was a Chechen, whom the Russians don’t like anyway, so they’d be cool with that. Making the other Russian Jewish also fits with Obama’s world view of good and evil. With the animosity this current administration has shown towards Jewish people, it would not surprise me if that group would be Obama’s personal choice to make the bad guys (if he had to choose some group other than American right-wingers).

As far as the Mexican connection is concerned, hey, the Obama administration has sent Americans guns into Mexico and caused Mexican deaths and crime as a result, without giving Mexico the typical apologies they love to give to our foes, so it’s no surprise they wouldn’t care much about making them the bad guys. I don’t know what beef the Obama administration has against Costa Ricans. Perhaps they better start worrying what Obama has up his sleeve for them.

So yes, having a Russian Jew fund the operation was a dumb, unexplained twist. But it was such a minor plot point, it did not impair my enjoyment of the movie. (In fact, Bookworm retracts the charge of anti-Semetism after more consideration.)

Our military deserves to finally have a supportive film in the long 10 years of war they have endured. Films like Act of Valor and Restrepo have sadly been few and far between. In an torn America that can’t even bring itself to give our returning warriors a parade, supporting this little film feels like a fine way to support our troops.

Good job, guys. Bravo, for all you have done.

|Privacy | Prudence Potpourri

Beauty Queen Sexually Assaulted

Finally, a celebrity, a former Miss USA, has been forced to suffer the indignities of a TSA full-body pat-down and has come away crying. I say “finally” not because I want celebrities to be subjected to degrading interactions with their government like the rest of us commoners. No, I say it because only a celebrity can bring sufficient attention to the abuse. Only a celebrity can garner the celebrity-crazed media sympathy for him or her. Only a celebrity can be handed an instant megaphone to express her disgust at the foul treatment, no matter how “routine” or “professional” the TSA tries to say it is.

(That’s a far cry from media-craving lawyer Gloria Allred proclaiming last year that she actually enjoyed her airport governmental fondling, which actually explains somewhat—though not totally—her bizarre baseball-bat sex simulation in front of two young girls in pigtails last week. [Warning: TMZ presents the inappropriate, needless demonstration in its typically rude and vulgar manner.])

I feel very badly for the 2003 crowned beauty Susie Castillo and her traumatic experience at the hands of a Dallas TSA employee. No one should be forced to endure what she did. No government should ever have the right to run their hands over a citizen’s body if they have no warrant and that citizen is not under arrest.

Unfortunately, this now occurs every day in this country. We hear the outcry when video of a little girl being molested by Uncle Sam pops up, but the clamor over the same thing occurring to her mother and sisters and grandmothers has gone silent.

Here’s the video Castillo made after going through the ordeal and after she then talked to the TSA to register a complaint.

If you have suffered through a TSA full-body pat-down too, follow Castillo’s recommendations and speak up. That’s the only way this horrendous policy will get changed.

I, for one, have not flown since this radiate-or-grope policy was enacted, and I will not fly again until it is repealed.

Speak up. Fight for your liberty. It’s rapidly being stripped away.

*****
Related Prudy Posts:
Groping Towards Bethlehem
A New TSA Logo and Legislation
The 2010 Sooper Awards Ceremony

TSA Logo Toon, courtesy of SooperMexican. The TSA Logo is also available as a t-shirt. Click the toon above or click here to go to the store to order it.

|Nostalgia

The 2010 Sooper Awards Ceremony

As the internet rolls over into the New Year, I have joined with a highly entertaining guest blogger to present the 2010 Sooper Awards Ceremony. Please give a hand of applause to my friend and partner in political roasting, SooperMexican. We hope to make this an annual event, as we impart awards to political events of the past year through the rosy-colored lens of the year previous! Confused yet? Hang in there and it will become clear. (We hope.)

Let’s roll!

First up….

THE BEND-OVER BARACK AWARD

Last year, we saw a slew of Obama bending over backwards, forwards, and all over the place in order to placate our international detractors. He bowed to the Japanese Emperor, deeply bent for the Saudi King, and even made obeisance to the Tampa mayor. Fortunately for our weak stomachs, his prostrations before the unions and tort lawyers went un-photographed.

This year, the Bend-Over Barack Award goes to…

[opens the envelope]

the Mid-Term Election of 2010!

[surprised applause]

Yes, that’s right. The “Election of Recovery,” as they like to call it over at  SooperMexican Central, was a deep repudiation of all the slings and arrows that our fair president has flung at us, the common rabble, from atop his ill-gotten, gilded throne on Pennsylvania Avenue.

The unwashed, bitter-clinging masses have grown tired of his budget-obliterating spending, his vindictive, arrogant attitude, and his flaccid, inept execution of his elected obligations.

While his unapologetic bending over for foreign potentates and domestic opportunists took mere seconds, we hope and pray that this latter bending will continue well into the 2012 election!

NEXT!

THE STIMULATE AMERICA AWARD

The Obama administration got off to an aggressive start, manhandling the public assets in the most egregious way in the Great Stimulus Boondoggle of 2009. Joe Biden is still working on counting all the waste, fraud and abuse that was shipped from the public coffers to FOOs (Friends of Obama) around the world. Yes, world—-as in funding, say, a $832,200 genital-washing study in South Africa to stimulate the US economy.

This year, the Stimulate America Award goes to…

[opens the envelope]

the Transportation Safety Administration!

[applause, while removing shoes and belts]

Yes, the TSA has gone far beyond the call of duty—-and the 4th Amendment—-for getting up close and personal in their efforts to stimulate the public’s peace of mind by groping all their bits and pieces. f keeping the list of all the terrorists she catches with explosives in their pants. Of course she won’t catch any, because terrorists have myriad ways to go through all TSA procedures without having their bomb materials detected.

At least she’s done an excellent job keeping up the pretense that government-mandated sexual assault of the American public will keep us safe, while giving perverts and Gloria Allred a thrill. Just what a Secretary of Homeland Security is supposed to do.

OTRO MAS POR FAVOR!


THE PIMPIN’ AIN’T EASY AWARD

In 2009, we saw the beginning of the end for our favorite anti-American, government-subsidized community organization organizing the community for social injustice: ACORN, aka the Atheist Commie Organization for the Redistribution of NeoSocialism. The unlikely and surprising architects of its demise were the spunky and gaudily dressed James O’Keefe and his saucy accomplice, Hannah Giles. You all know the story by now, so let’s fast forward to the awardee for this year….

and the Pimpin’ Ain’t Easy Award goes to…

[opens the envelope]

the Death of the DREAM Act!

[sleepy applause]

In one of the most obvious and detestable shows of political pandering in recent memory, Harry Reid and the congressional Democrats concocted a bit of political theater for the birds – mashing up the freshly plucked wormy legislation we call the DREAM Act in their mealy mouths and force-feeding their gluttonous, self-serving constituents, the Hispanic supporters that kept a few of them in office.

Luckily for our stalwart Republic, this hastily written bill was only half-heartedly pushed by our Leftist friends, just enough to secure another election cycle’s worth of pigmented votes without actually effecting any change for the downtrodden serfs to whom they give only lip service.

Harry Reid out-pimped James O’Keefe by whoring out the Latin vote, taking it for all it’s worth, and spanking it on its bottom as he kicked ’er to the curb! Good job, Harry!

ORALE!

THE TWO-FACED JANUS AWARD

In ancient Greece, some citizens adorned the top of their doorways with the image of Janus, the double-faced god, symbolizing that every entry is also an exit. In 2009, it would have been appropriate to decorate the entrance of the Senate with the gnarled, wrinkly, grotesque image of Ben Nelson, leader of the Blue Dog Democrats, who promised to uphold their moral objection to the federal financing of abortions by refusing to vote for ObamaCare. Pro-life supporters wasted much effort calling to urge them to stick to their guns, but they chose to stick out their hands instead, accepting sleazy payoffs once Barack named the right price to purchase their principles.

For 2010, the only comparable competitor for the Two-Faced Janus Award is….

[opens the envelope]

The lame duck GOPers!

[applause as feather confetti flutters down]

After scoring an unprecedented victory in the 2010 elections, seizing the House of Reps and evening up the Senate, the Republicans decided to act as if they had been struck with amnesia, teleported themselves back to November 4th 2008, and eagerly re-assumed the role of defeated losers.

Once again, the GOP filled the Christmas season with the essence of lame. The American public gave them a mandate to reject the socialist, budget-busting, impotent policies of the Democrats, but the Republicans behaved like a cheap date, hardly even bothering to feign resistance while granting Obama another nearly trillion dollar stimulus bill, as described by Chuck Krauthammer.

At least good ol’ Nelson teased us a little before screwing us, but the GOPers made all the right noises, and gave it up to Barack only weeks later. Then to add insult to injury, they let him pass his ridiculous START treaty, allowing his sycophantic press to reenact the leg-tingly adoration and unearned esteem they lavished upon him two years ago.

Congrats, GOP. You sold out the country, but you won a coveted Janus award. Keep it up, and in two years, you’ll find out how easily an entrance can also be an exit.

Wait, There’s MORE!

THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN ACTION FIGURE AWARD

In 2009, Barack Obama chin-jutted his way through the dense jungle of prescient criticisms of his inexperience, arrogance, and unpreparedness. Still, he held out the dim candle of historic hope, and like voting moths to a flame, the American public flitted and followed him towards the radiance he claimed was the light at the end of the tunnel.

And still the gaudacity of hope sustained the hope-springs in the heart of man—earnest-sounding promises were made and swallowed, and everywhere a cult of Obama sprung up, selling icons of our savior borne of mystery.

As we all know, a prophet is always derided in his own hometown, and so this year, this Revelatory Icon Award goes to….

[opens envelope]

Alvin Greene!

[applause and fist bumps]

South Carolina’s leading Democrats howled when the unknown, unemployed man became their nominee to the US Senate seat, and they vigorously decried the legitimacy of his nomination. He beat the establishment democratic nominee without any campaigning, without any yard signs, prompting some to doubt whether he honestly won the nomination.

While running for a senate seat in the greatest country in the world since its inception 6,000 years ago, Alvin was also fending off prosecution for a felony obscenity charge, wherein he is accused of showing pornographic images to a unwilling 18-year-old woman. In interviews, he was as disjointed as Crispin Glover on the David Letterman show, and at his lowest (highest?) point, he actually said that his answer to solving his state’s budget woes was to sell action figures of himself.

What better exemplar of the fall from glory that Barack Obama has experienced than that of a man who actually thinks he can save the government budget by producing little action figures of himself? This is the delusion that the American voter was sold unawares, and now is waking up to.

2009 began with a praised political figure pretending to fulfill the image of an action figure. 2010 ended with a failed political figure sticking to a ridiculous hope that his image as an action figure might save him from his ineptitude and political inexperience. Oh, also there was Alvin Greene….

…AND Finally!

The Meghan McCain BOOBY PRIZE

Last year, Meghan McCain gifted the world with a booby prize in the form of a Twitter avatar filled with boobage and, appropriately, a biography of Mr. “15 Minutes of Fame,” Andy Warhol. She protested the avi-inspired guffawing heard around teh internets by claiming she hadn’t meant to be sexy at all—-she always looked busty and bimbo-ish. When that induced ROFL hilarity, she huffily threatened to delete her account, then apologized and promo’d her new column.

Without further ado, the MeggieMac Booby Prize passes on to the 2010 winner…

[opens envelope, upside down]

Keith “MeggyBigMac” Olbermann!

[stunned silence…uproarious applause]

Yes, the Vegas bookmakers all had Georgia representative Hank Johnson as the odds-on favorite for his concern that adding more military to the US territory of Guam would cause the island to tip over.

But no, in a late year rush to snag the award, Olbermann has gone out of his way to become a master loco tweeter: Melting down, blowing up, quitting his account in a bluster and, like his award’s namesake, returning to the glory of public abuse and mockery.

To seal his emergency bid for the award, Olby’s ratings went to the bottom of the tank and inspired a series of wild twitrants against his nemesis and ratings powerhouse, Fox News. Thusly, he clinched the award for 2010‘s Booby of the Year and shall henceforth be known as OlberBoob.

…se acabo!

Thank you all for joining us on this whirlwind tour of some of the more embarrassing and brain aneurysm-causing events of this last year through the eyes of 2009′s events! Once again, I’d like to thank my brilliant guest blogger, SooperMexican! Visit his site, buy his cartoon t-shirts, and follow him on Twitter! You won’t regret it because he mostly just uses my ideas!

Have a great New Year! (and forgive the Sooper-excessive use of exclamation marks found in this post…)

— Prudence

|Prudence Potpourri

Groping Towards Bethlehem

Numerous jokes have been made on Twitter about the sexual assault that is now required by the TSA if you wish to board an airplane. Men seem to have much less concern over being groped by government—with some saying that gives them all the more reason to fly. Ha ha. [Update: Okay, some of the #TSAslogans are funny, but…] Go ahead and laugh while the cannibals strip you down and oil you up as they get the fire ready.

The Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution’s Bill of Rights says:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

Just how does routine TSA intimate molestation of citizens not violate every bit of that amendment?

If it is not unreasonable to have some random man stick his hands between our legs and rummage around until he’s satisfied there is nothing else to feel, what is? Just where do you draw the line? Perhaps they should combine the security check with a medical exam for breast and testicular cancer, kill two birds with one grope, so to speak.

Where is the probable cause? If you are okay with government-required sexual assault, perhaps we need to send SWAT teams to your house whenever you purchase a plane ticket, so they can go through all your belongings there, just in case you might be constructing a bomb that you would then try to put in your little girl’s pants.

Is this okay?…

To me, that’s outrageous. Completely unacceptable. Forget giving added training to unskilled TSA flunkies on how to feel up children. They should not be touching them at all.

At Hot Air, Ed Morrissey writes:

We can’t know for certain that terrorists wouldn’t use a child as a mule to get explosives or other weapons through airport security, of course. In fact, we’ve seen al-Qaeda use children and the mentally impaired as “suicide” bombers in Iraq, so we know they have no scruples in doing so. Allahpundit noted three days ago that those who complain about those procedures now would have a very different take on the matter if a plane suddenly exploded in mid-air. However, wouldn’t that require the parents of the child (or those posing as parents) to be the actual terrorists? Shouldn’t TSA have taken the whole family aside and questioned Mom and Dad first to see if they got a hint of some ulterior motive?

Allahpundit and Morrissey are wrong. I would not have a “very different take on the matter if a plane suddenly exploded in mid-air.” This grossly gross invasion of privacy can never be justified—and it likely would not prevent an attack. The terrorists will just find another way, while you agree to show up at the airport three hours early in a robe with a change of clothing for after your oral, anal and vaginal wanding.

Why would you submit to this at an airport, but not at a movie theater or grocery store or wedding reception or crosstown bus?

People, wake up. Think about what you are agreeing to. What would the Founding Fathers have said? Would George Washington have thought it acceptable to have some slovenly soldier stick his hands up Martha’s skirt?

If you let this line be crossed, you have no liberty left. There is nothing you won’t submit to.

Join the outcry. Follow John Tyner’s lead in refusing to allow the government to touch your crotch:

From W.B. Yeats’ The Second Coming:

A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Is it too late to stop its advance?

Update: For more info see the previous post: TSA = Traditional Sexual Assault