Wednesday morning I'll be starting the day back with Toronto's Number One morning man, John Oakley, live on AM640 at 8.30am Eastern. Hope you can join us.
~As we said in our farewell to 2015, the jihadist New Year began on January 7th with the massacre at Charlie Hebdo. We will have some anniversary observances in the days ahead but the cover of Charlie's own one-year-later edition testifies to the damage done to free speech. That's God at right - indeed, art-wise, rather a Christian god - alongside the headline "The Assassin Is Still At Large".
It would be a fine cover if it were so; if it were God in general - the Christian God, the Jewish God, the Hindu God and even, as Scaramouche notes, the L Ron Hubbard God - who had gunned down Charlie. But, of course, it was not. In Paris, it's Islam vs post-Christian Euro-secularists. In Mosul, it's Islam vs Christians. In Tel Aviv, Islam vs Jews. Around the world, Islam vs [Your Team Here].
The editorial inside, by Riss, successor to the murdered Charb, is a little more focused, referring to "fanatiques abrutis par le Coran", fanatics moronized by the Koran. But it blurs these fanatics with those "d'autres religions" who wanted the weekly to die because it likes to "rire du religieux" - laugh at religion. There may be a last devout Catholic in France who would like to see Charlie Hebdo go out of business, but it's the adherents of only one religion who wished to see its cartoonists and writers dead. The fact that Charlie Hebdo, for entirely understandable reasons, now prefers discreet evasions to the truth is deeply distressing.
By those "entirely understandable reasons", I mean that the nature of last year's hashtag-mania - "#JeSuisCharlie" - told the surviving editors and cartoonists just how shallow and worthless the world's support was. As I said in the Danish Parliament in September, on the tenth anniversary of the Mohammed cartoons:
Almost everyone who mattered at Charlie Hebdo is dead. What did they die for? A hashtag and a candlelight vigil? None of those who seized eagerly on #JeSuisCharlie as the cause du jour, from Angela Merkel and François Hollande to George Clooney and Helen Mirren to thousands in the streets of Paris and millions across the Internet, were willing to do the one thing that would have mattered, and show the reason why they died. Which is why such sterling champions of free speech as the PLO leader Mahmoud Abbas and from Turkey Sultan Erdogan's vizier Ahmet Davutoglu were happy to march in the big post-slaughter parade. Do you think they'd have been there if any of the dead's multitudes of new "friends" were waving Charlie magazine covers?
So the cowardly and evasive "support" the world showed after January's bloodbath was a very clear lesson to the survivors in the limits of global solidarity - and how it will go next time: We'll be sad when you die, too! Although probably not quite as sad and not in as many numbers, because, like, been there, done that.
This week's cover would have been very different had the tilty-headed hashtag wankers actually shown a bit of backbone.
~My Clinton/Cosby comparison on Rush was, as I've said, a throwaway aside, but it rumbles on. Kathy Shaidle at Taki's Mag examines it mainly from the Bill Cosby end:
Evidently (although just why remains elusive) Bill Clinton is on millions of Americans' do-no-wrong list and Cosby—despite being so "beloved" and lauded for generations—is not.
Douglas Ernst at WND stays closer to Slick Willie:
In short, Steyn wanted to know why charges leveled against Clinton by Eileen Wellstone, Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey and Paula Jones have not diminished the former president's status with pundits and policymakers, but Cosby – a donor to the Clinton Foundation who has not been found guilty of any crimes – is a national pariah...
Steyn's underlying point was highlighted Friday when CNN Anchor Alisyn Camerota appeared shocked to learn of the number of women who have made claims against Clinton.
"There are about 14 women who could be said to have made claims at one time or another," CNN political commentator Errol Louis told Camerota, the Daily Beast reported.
"Is that right? Fourteen?" the anchor replied.
You can understand why Alisyn finds that number hard to credit when, to the American media, even Monica is merely "alleged":
Republican Donald Trump, addressing attacks by Clinton's campaign surrogates, made waves on Tuesday with NBC's Savannah Guthrie when she referred to the former president's affair with Monica Lewinsky as "alleged."
"You mention Monica Lewinsky," Guthrie asked. "Are you saying an alleged extra-marital affair, that of course he has now admitted, is that fair game?"
"Is it alleged? I don't think that's alleged," Trump responded.
"No, he's admitted it, he's admitted it," said Guthrie.
"If he's admitted it, you don't have to use the word alleged," said Trump.
Clinton may have admitted it, but that's no reason for the court eunuchs of the media to...
Over at Salon, meanwhile, Amanda Marcotte insists that Cosby and Clinton have nothing in common.
~My new cat album, Feline Groovy, is still selling at Amazon - and attracting five-star reviews. For example, Ann Marie Galovic:
It was great, both music and Mark.
I have to say I love it, especially "Year of the Siamese Cat" and maybe even more so "Chase me, Charlie."
If we are giving suggestions for additional "cat" songs, how about a big cat: "The Lion Sleeps Tonight."
Gulp. That's not a song to be trifled with, but I'll put it down for consideration. The latest shipment of Feline Groovy CDs is hot off the press and available now, but if you can't wait for the mailman it can be yours in seconds via digital download from Amazon or iTunes.
~And finally for our readers Down Under: Don't forget to book early for my Australian tour next month. There've been, I think, four prime ministers since I was last there, which means it's been about three months.