(Header "Links Today" moved to formal title. No other changes made.)
The beauty pageant cancellation furor takes a nasty twist: http://www.news.com.au/entertainment/fashion/beauty-pageant-star-eden-wood-leaves-australian-families-disappointed-with-no-show/story-e6frfn7i-1226105648150
To cut a long story short, there’s evidence to suggest that rival current-affairs programs are behind this, with one of them offering the visiting mother money to pull her daughter (on a pretext) out of the pageant its rival had exclusive rights to, in order to bushwhack the other’s story and create its own. Death threats to the managers and/or the parents are way out of line, but they are an accurate barometer of the (justified) moral repugnance felt against people who are (probably rightly) perceived to behave in this fashion.
I’ve got no problem with the concept of child beauty pageants, but some of the parents are definitely taking it too far…
…and need to be removed from the pageant environment and probably their children as well. Canning the whole phenomenon is (as with restrictive gun laws in the wake of massacres) simply punishing the innocent along with the guilty, the antithesis of the Western moral and legal tradition. Some people will do anything to get their kid in lights and money in the bank. But that is their problem and nobody else’s.
Onto another topic:
. It would appear that the ‘limited’ war in Libya is taking a turn for the worse. Not only are our nominal ‘allies’, the Libyan rebels, seemingly unable to finish what they started despite ongoing Western airborne intervention, but they’re fighting among themselves in a manner which suggests that we’re backing the right horse for the wrong bettors: Libya
The outstanding successes of the Western World in war come when the objectives are clear and every effort is made to carry them out. Nothing could be less true about the shemozzle in Libya. Our allies are unreliable and may incorporate a significant proportion of our enemies, and the pretext on which we went in - an exclusion of Libyan government air assets to even the odds - has now expanded to the striking of ground targets with still no indication of when the end will be.
On top of that, the Tunisian and Egyptian "revolutions" are at significant risk of being Islamicized, meaning that what they end up with could well be worse for all concerned than what went out (much worse in the case of Egypt, which for all its faults was friendly - or at least not actively hostile - to Israel). In the light of this I have to view what's happening in Syria in two minds, knowing that it could easily be more of the same.