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Mark Steyn: Like It Is: Tookie goes to Austria ("Tookie Williams" football stadium?)
Jerusalem Post ^ | 12/29/05 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 12/30/2005 1:57:41 PM PST by frankjr

Many of the most heartwarming tales come out of Austria. One thinks of Oberndorf and the little parish church where the organ broke down on Christmas Eve 1818 and so Father Mohr and his organist Franz Gruber wrote a simple song that could be sung with only the accompaniment of a guitar: "Silent Night."

One thinks of the von Trapp family saying so long, farewell, auf wiedersehn, adieu to yieu and yieu and yieu and scramming Nazi Salzburg for a new life in Vermont.

And now we have a third inspirational story from little Austria. One day, a few years after the Trapps skedaddled outta there, a young man was born near Graz. His name was Arnold and he worked out every day and went to America and became Governor of California, and one morning he had to make a decision on whether or not to commute the death sentence of a multiple murderer called Tookie Williams. And he decided instead to let Tookie's execution go ahead.

And back in his old stomping grounds of Graz the politicians went bananas. In the old days, when some local lad made good and became Fuhrer of another state and started killing people, the hometown crowd couldn't wait to have a big ol' Anschluss with him. But times change, and contemplating Arnold's reign of terror his fellow Grazis decided they wanted to disAnschluss themselves from him. Outraged by Tookie's demise, Social Democratic and Green councilors and MPs immediately took action. Or what passes for "action" in European politics these days. They demanded that Arnold's name be removed from the Arnold Schwarzenegger football stadium. They proposed that it should be renamed the Tookie Williams football stadium. They launched moves to strip Arnold of his Austrian citizenship on the grounds that the death penalty is illegal in Europe, which is why a barbaric nation like the United States is ineligible for membership in the EU. ("What a tragedy," as Americans always say when you point this out to them.)

"People have had enough of him," Peter Pilz, an MP in the Steiermark regional parliament, told The Guardian. "For us, he has committed a state crime."

Personally I have no feelings one way or another on the death penalty. But I'm strongly in favor of sovereign jurisdictions having the right to run their own criminal justice systems. Which is why I rejoice at Arnold's reaction to the "threat" from Graz.

Writing to the mayor of his old town, Schwarzenegger noted that in the course of his gubernatorial term he'd have to make decisions on other death-row inmates, too - the next one comes up in January. So, wrote the governor, "in order to spare the responsible politicians of the city of Graz further concern, I withdraw from them as of this day the right to use my name in association with the Liebenauer Stadium... I expect the lettering to be removed by the end of 2005" - and, given that most European municipal workers are on vacation till the second week of January, that means the mayor may have had to sub-contract the job to any obliging Albanian Muslim refugees he could round up.

"The use of my name to advertise or promote the city of Graz in any way is no longer allowed," continued Arnold. "Graz will not have any problems in the future with my decisions as governor of California, because officially nothing connects us any more."

And just for good measure he returned the "Ring of Honor" he was given in 1999 for the "pride and recognition" he brought Graz.

THAT WOULD seem to suit everybody. Graz will be free to rename its stadium after Tookie Williams on New Year's Day and the "state criminal" Schwarzenegger no longer has to live in dread of being formally stripped of his "Ring of Honor" in a humiliating resolution of the Graz council.

But mysteriously the governor's severing of ties with his home town seemed to distress them. The mayor, Siegfried Nagl, begged Arnold to reconsider, only to be told that the ring was already in the mail. It seems that, aside from Kurt Waldheim, there haven't been a lot of internationally marketable Austrians in recent years, and somehow the campaign to rename the football stadium has lost its momentum. The former Crip gang leader would certainly look very fetching on a souvenir dirndl or baggy gangsta-style lederhosen, and no doubt you could have a range of commemorative dishes on the cafeteria menu - say, a 7-Eleven schnitzel, to mark Tookie's murder of 26-year old store clerk Albert Lewis Owens, followed by a Brookhaven strudel, to honor the motel at which he murdered an elderly Taiwanese family for a hundred bucks, all washed down with a Muthaf--ka apfelsaft, named for the term he used to threaten the jurors who convicted him. Should do wonders for the Austrian tourism industry.

Schwarzenegger is no conservative, and has been a disappointing governor. But his letter is magnificent, and the pleasure it affords was only heightened by the hilarious Guardian headline to its report on the "controversy": "Schwarzenegger Faces 'Tookie' Backlash In Austria." No, he doesn't. With one typewritten sheet, he's ended the whole damn backlash, and usefully offered a good basic template for US-EU relations that recognizes the basic differences between the two: Americans have responsibilities, Europeans have attitudes. Indeed, the EU has attitudes in inverse proportion to its ability to act on them. It's able to strut and preen on the world stage secure in the knowledge that nobody expects it to do anything about anything. If entire nations want to embrace self-congratulatory, holier-than-thou gesture politics as a way of life, why not give them a hand? The politicians of Graz want Tookie to be a domestic political issue? Now he is, if only for the tourist industry.

So, like the von Trapps, Arnold is singing as he goes: Green Party poseurs

And posturing mayors

Renaming stadia

For multiple slayers

Dull civic honors of cheap cheesy rings

These are a few of my least fav'rite things...

Arnold to Graz: Don't ring me, I'll ring you.


TOPICS: News/Current Events; US: California
KEYWORDS: austria; california; eurotrash; liebenaustadium; marksteyn; schwarzenegger; steyn; tookie
EU supports Tookie; MSM/Libs support terrorist rights. What is the world coming to??
1 posted on 12/30/2005 1:57:43 PM PST by frankjr
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To: frankjr

"What is the world coming to??"

Stupidity is rampant. Because of the public school system, I presume.


2 posted on 12/30/2005 1:59:31 PM PST by Hill of Tara
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To: frankjr
They proposed that it should be renamed the Tookie Williams football stadium.

Only if you can define 'tookie' without asking anyone for help.

3 posted on 12/30/2005 2:02:32 PM PST by siunevada (If we learn nothing from history, what's the point of having one? - Peggy Hill)
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To: frankjr
There has always seemed to be two Arnolds. There's the one that does stuff himself, and then there's the one that listens to his advisers and staff.

Without a doubt, the issue with Graz was handled solely by Arnold himself.

While he and I will never see everything eye to eye, I would prefer for him to handle things on his own and send the staff and advisers packing. Some unintended mistakes will occur, but that far beats the intended useless crud that is fed to him.
4 posted on 12/30/2005 2:07:42 PM PST by kingu
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To: frankjr
...all washed down with a Muthaf--ka apfelsaft...

How does Steyn come up with these masterpieces, day in and day out?

5 posted on 12/30/2005 2:18:24 PM PST by Gritty ("Americans cannot escape the final showdown with Islam" - Barbara Stock)
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To: Pokey78

A Steyn PING to you!!


6 posted on 12/30/2005 2:19:17 PM PST by Gritty ("Americans cannot escape the final showdown with Islam" - Barbara Stock)
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To: frankjr
In the old days, when some local lad made good and became Fuhrer of another state and started killing people, the hometown crowd couldn't wait to have a big ol' Anschluss with him.

Ouch!!
7 posted on 12/30/2005 2:30:00 PM PST by rightwingintelligentsia
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To: frankjr

bump


8 posted on 12/30/2005 2:30:49 PM PST by nuconvert (No More Axis of Evil by Christmas ! TLR) [there's a lot of bad people in the pistachio business])
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To: frankjr
Americans have responsibilities, Europeans have attitudes. Indeed, the EU has attitudes in inverse proportion to its ability to act on them. It's able to strut and preen on the world stage secure in the knowledge that nobody expects it to do anything about anything.

That goes for Canada too.

9 posted on 12/30/2005 2:32:11 PM PST by Polybius
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To: frankjr

At first I took a copy or two for a comment on this. However as is often the case with Steyn, by the time I came to the end of the column, there wasn't anything left to say and little left to do except guffaw.


10 posted on 12/30/2005 2:36:51 PM PST by stevem
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To: Polybius

I'm about ready to say to hell with 'em all. Let the Europeans and Canadians become part of the Muslim Caliphate. Let their women be put in long, ugly, robes and cover their faces. Let 'em take charge of their own security. American kids are dying in Iraq for Europe and Canada tonight, don't doubt for a minute that that is true. After we leave Iraq, let the Europeans fight their own battles. Let 'em pay $10.00 per gallon, let 'em take care of themselves.


11 posted on 12/30/2005 2:40:38 PM PST by kjo
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To: frankjr

Go, Arnold!


12 posted on 12/30/2005 2:41:33 PM PST by Let's Roll ( "Congressmen who ... undermine the military ... should be arrested, exiled or hanged" - A. Lincoln)
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To: frankjr

And Arafat received the "Peace Prize" Nothing really surprises me any more.


13 posted on 12/30/2005 2:41:50 PM PST by StACase
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To: frankjr
his letter is magnificent, and the pleasure it affords was only heightened by the hilarious Guardian headline to its report on the "controversy": "Schwarzenegger Faces 'Tookie' Backlash In Austria." No, he doesn't. With one typewritten sheet, he's ended the whole damn backlash, and usefully offered a good basic template for US-EU relations that recognizes the basic differences between the two: Americans have responsibilities, Europeans have attitudes.

OUCH!!

14 posted on 12/30/2005 2:58:32 PM PST by mylife (The roar of the masses could be farts)
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To: frankjr; Tijeras_Slim; Constitution Day; Fierce Allegiance
"Tookie Williams" football stadium

BOOM! HEADSHOT!

15 posted on 12/30/2005 3:07:51 PM PST by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: frankjr
When they kick the soccer balls over there, they all have to be careful not to kick each other in the tookie......
16 posted on 12/30/2005 4:09:17 PM PST by b4its2late (Liberals are good examples of why some animals eat their young.)
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To: Pokey78

Thanks (in advance) for the ping.


17 posted on 12/30/2005 4:15:46 PM PST by aculeus
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To: frankjr

The Terminator to Graz: "I von't be back."


18 posted on 12/30/2005 4:17:18 PM PST by Cecily
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To: frankjr; kingu
But his letter is magnificent...Without a doubt, the issue with Graz was handled solely by Arnold himself.

And very politically intelligent. Well above the Austrian's pay grade recently.

I smell a Kennedy in the pen.

19 posted on 12/30/2005 4:19:00 PM PST by Amerigomag
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To: stevem

I was so overjoyed to see that he has a book coming out. Unfortunately, it isn't until November. Why does Amazon taunt us by putting books up almost a year in advance? I might not have to post ever again, I will just lead people to the local bookstore to read the book.


20 posted on 12/30/2005 4:28:46 PM PST by Mr. Blonde (You know, Happy Time Harry, just being around you kinda makes me want to die.)
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To: Gritty
The former Crip gang leader would certainly look very fetching on a souvenir dirndl or baggy gangsta-style lederhosen...

How 'bout this little hidden gem.

21 posted on 12/30/2005 4:35:12 PM PST by TontoKowalski
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bttt


22 posted on 12/30/2005 4:37:20 PM PST by Pa' fuera (I support family reunification.......through deportation)
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To: frankjr

Europe sealed its fate the first day it started to believe its own politically correct B/S.They can only live in their fairytale world for so long before reality jumps up in the form of a radical muslum and decapitates them.Will they wait until the enemy overruns France like the Nazi's did or will they wake up in time to stop the enemy from raping and pillaging their women?I think we already know the answer when we see the muslums burning France to the ground and the French government offering them piles of money and begging them to stop.


23 posted on 12/30/2005 4:53:58 PM PST by rdcorso (There Is No Such Thing As A Neutral Person During A War With Radical Islam.)
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To: martin_fierro

24 posted on 12/30/2005 5:17:44 PM PST by Fierce Allegiance (I miss my dad.)
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To: frankjr
I have a bad feeling in the next 50 years we'll be back at war in Europe again trying to save it from itself.

I'm ashamed at how they've taken up Tookie's cause. It's beyond perverse and really shows a contrast between America and European socialist thought. We don't need to wonder about where Arnold's come from and why he wanted to leave it behind.

25 posted on 12/31/2005 12:50:11 AM PST by newzjunkey ((Tagline on holiday.))
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To: scholar; Bullish; linear; yoda swings

Ping


26 posted on 01/01/2006 9:00:44 AM PST by knighthawk (We will always remember We will always be proud We will always be prepared so we may always be free)
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To: kingu; frankjr

I agree. I haven't been thrilled with Arnie, either, but this letter was a masterstroke, and I think if he did more things like this, his numbers would soar, both in CA and elsewhere. This is the Arnie we want!


27 posted on 01/01/2006 9:28:25 AM PST by livius
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