Thursday, June 28, 2007

Piracy Pays

Especially if you target naive, liberal non-government organization (NGO) workers who neither know how to use a gun nor have the intestinal foritude to actually fight for anything they believe in. All the NGO/aid community knows how to do is to appease, appease, appease. They don't seem to understand the simple idea that bullies will back down when their target starts fighting back.

This is especially a problem in countries like Somalis. As the Strategy Page reports,
Somalia is unique in that the locals have turned a humanitarian disaster into a business. This has been going on for fifteen years. Back then, when famine brought in aid agencies and food relief, some of the Somali warlords saw it as a business opportunity. The warlords began attacking and looting the relief convoys. The UN sent in peacekeepers, who got shot at a lot, and who soon got out. The relief agencies tried to keep operating since then, but they can only succeed if they play by Somali rules. That means, for example, that the trucks carrying food to starving Somalis, have to pay "taxes" to the warlords whose territory they pass through. The aid agencies try to negotiate these payments, but the best they can do is keep track of how many roadblocks there are along the routes the trucks have to take, and hope they gave the drivers enough cash to make it. Currently there are nearly 300 roadblocks in southern Somalia. The gunmen charge $20-$500 per truck, depending on what they think the driver can afford. It's a tricky business, as if they charge too much, or just steal the truck, the word will get around and the trucks will take another route, no matter how long it is.

the NGOs have made a killing off the perception that they are "above politics". This is of course about as true as the oft-repeated assertion that Amnesty International was created by Peter Benenson. NGOs like to play the anti-American game to the world's media, as this assures them of more positive press. And they take advantage of every corrupt member of the UN to keep their own particular hobby-horse flush with cash.

However, they are beginning to find that professional victims only attract predators. And the UN is no more capable of protecting them than it is of actually performing any of the global government functions that the NGOs so desperately want to take away from the US and give to the UN. As the article comments,
What the "aid community" has lost sight of is the fact that the idea that the UN was supposed to be "impartial" was not part of the original UN concept. The original idea was that the Great Powers (the West) would use the UN to maintain order. But since the Great Powers couldn't get along, the UN evolved its own ways. The aid community, and all those NGOs that appeared in the last half century, through they were above politics. Now they have received a reality check, and they don't like it at all.

Perhaps now maybe the NGOs and the "aid community" might realise that the only real protection comes from those who are strong-willed and tough enough to fight for themselves. That means the United States, as the only Western country powerful enough to enforce its will on a worldwide basis. And after fifty years of anti-American propaganda from the NGOs, Americans are not any too willing to spend their valuable time protecting them. What goes around comes around. Maybe even to NGOs. And if that is the case, it couldn't have happened to a more deserving group.

Hat tip to Glenn Reynolds.

...and STAY Dead!

Teddy Kennedy's hopes for an influx of new Democratic voters and President Bush's hopes of gaining a major domestic legislative legacy came crashing down in the United States Senate today. As the Associated Press sadly reports,
President Bush's immigration plan to legalize as many as 12 million unlawful immigrants while fortifying the border collapsed in the Senate on Thursday, crushing both parties' hopes of addressing the volatile issue before the 2008 elections.
The Senate vote that drove a stake through the delicate compromise was a stinging setback for Bush, who had made reshaping immigration laws a central element of his domestic agenda. It could carry heavy political consequences for Republicans and Democrats, many of whom were eager to show they could act on a complex issue of great interest to the public.

After the defeat of the bill, President Bush was reported as saying,
"Legal immigration is one of the top concerns of the American people and Congress' failure to act on it is a disappointment," a grim-faced president said after an appearance in Newport, R.I. "A lot of us worked hard to see if we couldn't find common ground. It didn't work."

Actually, Mr. President, if this were about legal immigration, the voters probably wouldn't be nearly so upset. It is the fact that this was a blatant attempt to give the benfits of American citizenship to folks without their earning it that enraged so many Americans. Why is it so hard for Washington to realise the difference between LEGAL and ILLEGAL immigration?

While this is a much-needed show of empathy with the concerns of their LEGAL constituents by Senators, I disagree with the A.P.'s analysis that it could have "heavy political consequences for Democrats and Republicans", however. It has been plain throughout that a very large majority of voters in both Democratic and Republican parties was furiously opposed to this shamefully conceived attempt to ramrod millions of new illegals down the throats of American voters who have already been forecd to pay for the many peccadillos of earlier attempts at amnesty.

I think that the Republicans (and Democrats) who so strongly opposed the bill will reap rewards, while the forces of amnesty (excluding the buffoonish Kennedy, who is essentially unbeatable in Massachusetts) may well suffer for their attempt to push this shamnesty past American voters. If I were a supporter of amnesty, I would be hoping that voters forget before I face them again. The House, who would have been most concerned, must have breathed a sigh of relief, as the failure of the Senate to force cloture means the House does not even need to address the issue.

Hopefully this will serve as a lesson that however much illegals lobby Congress, American citizens and legal residents do not like to see criminals granted privileges that they cannot access. And that is what this bill amounted to- an attempt to give Mexican criminals more rights in the United States than Americans. Remember, Congresspeople- it is legal voters who hold your fate in their hands- not illegals from across the border. Next time, maybe you can figure out that simply enforcing existing laws and securing the border must come befroe you attempt to further dilute this great county with an influx of those who neither deserve nor waznt to become American.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Light Posting This Week

Posting will be light this week and next week due to some very aggressive deadlines and schedules at work. Bear with me, and I hope to be more or less back to normal after the first week of July.

States Against Illegals

While Congress tries to figure out how they can pull a boondoggle of an amnesty over the wide-open eyes of American voters, some states have tired of Washington's pandering to illegal aliens at the expense of legal residents and citizens, who are asked to fund these giveaways of privileges to people who have no wish to beecome American- they only want our money while being able to spit on our culture and laws.

One Florida sheriff has found a highly effective way of catching illegals- enforce the laws on the books. According to the Associated Press, Florida Sheriff Frank McKeithen of Panama City has created a task force to enforce "a long-standing Florida law prohibitiing employers from knowingly hiring illegal immigrants". McKeithen's tactics? Simple. Have several uniformed deputies pull up to a construction site and then chase and catch whoever runs. The runners' names are then turned over to the federal immigration authorities. If no one runs, the deputies require the employers to produce proof of their employees' legal residence. Any who cannot prove they are legal are then arrested. And the tactic works. Since the sheriff began enforcing the laws, even the ACLU admits that illegals are leaving Panama City Beach.

This sounds like a brilliant plan- enforce laws already on the books and maybe the illegals will get the message. And so will the employers who are willing to play the game along with them. if you take aways the benefits and jobs that illegals are not entitled to anyway, you will eventually convince them that there is no benefit in breaking the laws to come here. Now all we have to do is somehow convince our pandering Congress and President that laws are to be enforced, and before they give away any more of our privileges to people who have not earned them, maybe they ought to try doing what they take an oath to do when they take office- enforce the laws and protect Americans, not Mexicans.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Cuba & History

Cuba has been a thorn in the side of the United States since we foolishly allowed Fidel Castro to clamp a dictatorship on the residents of the island. Today, June 22, 2007 is a pasrticularly painful reminder that the United States could have completely prevented this from occuring.

On this date in the year 1898, Admiral William Sampson began amphibious landings at Santiago as a part of the Cuban campaign of the Spanish-American War. This is significant not only beacause of the ability of the United States Navy to successfully execute an amphibious assault- which would be useful during both World Wars in the following century, but because of the effect that this could have had upon American history.

At the conclusion of the war, the United States had established control of Cuba, and Spain ceded all claims. However, the United States, despite the pressure of Manifest Destiny, chose to relinquish control over the island, though we did take over control of the Philippine Islands.

In retrospect, this has been one of the gravest errors of American foreign policy. Had we chosen to make Cuba a part of the United States and allowed the Philippine Islands to gain immediate independence, we would undoubtedly be better off today. The Philippines have brought the United States very little benefit, while the disadvantages of our refusal to take over Cuba are with us still today.

Partners for Power

Anyone who reads any sort of reliable news provider (that eliminates the New York Times) is aware that the United States, along with most other Western democratic republics, is dependent on foreign oil. The problem with this is that most oil outside of the United States proper is in countries whose governments are at best unfriendly to the ideals of Western freedom (Russia, other Communist countries) and at worst who are actively trying to destroy Western culture (Middle Eastern Muslim countries).

However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. David Sokol, chairman of the MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company, today has an interesting opinion-editorial in the Washington Post online edition on how the United States can achieve energy self-sufficiency and at the same time reduce damaging emissions.

Sokol proposes that,
What's needed is a joint effort from the power sector, customers and the environmental community to push Congress and the Bush administration to live up to their rhetoric on clean coal, renewables, new nuclear power and efficiency programs.

Federal research and development funding for energy has declined 85 percent since the early 1980s, and efforts to fund the initiatives authorized in the 2005 Energy Policy Act have been sporadic at best. The $7 billion to $9 billion that President Kennedy sought for the space program in 1961 would be the equivalent of $46 billion to $60 billion today. By contrast, the Energy Department's annual civilian R&D budget is barely $2 billion.


This effort could be financed through a small fee (one-twentieth of a cent) applied to every kilowatt of energy sold in the United States. Combined with matching federal funds, this could provide about $4 billion annually -- enough, experts believe, to develop the technology to reduce emissions 25 percent below 2000 levels by the year 2030, with dramatic reductions thereafter.

Sokol has the right idea, though I agree with Captain Ed Morrissey over at Captain's Quarters, who describes Sokol as "being right for the wrong reasons." Morrissey correctly notes that where Sokol targets climate change as a reason for this program, climate change is "hardly the greatest challenge to our generation", despite what global government- enthusiasts like Al Gore and dipsy anti-American socialists like Barbara Boxer think. However, getting America weaned from foreign oil, especially foreign oil controlled by the very people who want to destroy our culture is an excellent idea.

Personally, I would like to see nuclear power come back in vogue. The environmentalism movement, with their usual short-sighted selfishness, did a very good job of killing the industry back in the 1970s, but nuclear power represents the only true long-term alternative to oil. And nuclear power is far cleaner than coal, or oil, or any other high-return energy source. Wind power and solar power, while undoubtedly eco-friendly, are far too region-specific and too undependable to ever replace oil, coal and other sources that really power the country.

In the main, Sokol presents an excellent argument for government and industry to work together as they did in the space program to bring America to independence in energy. However, i wish he had focused on the real threat foreign oil holds- that of dependence on one's enemies, as opposed to the less credulous threat of unspecified "climate change".

Hat tip to Captain's Quarters.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Congressional Approval

The Press has been telling us for some time about how unpopular President Bush is, with somewhere around 30 percent approval ratings. But what about that wonderful Democratic Congress that they helpd foist upon us back in November? How are the Democrats doing in succeeding the pork-happy Republican Congress that frustrated voters threw out in 2006?

It turns out there is good reason why reporters have been silent of late on Congress. According to a new Gallup poll out today, Congress' approval has hit a record low- only 14 percent of Americans approve of the job they are doing. As a matter of honesty, I must note that this definitely surpasses the numbers of the Republican Congress the Democrats succeeded. In fact, according to Gallup,
This 14% Congressional confidence rating is the all-time low for this measure, which Gallup initiated in 1973. The previous low point for Congress was 18% at several points in the period of time 1991 to 1994.

So, members of the Press. You have been vigilant in keeping the President's depressing approval numbers in the news, though they have barely wavered over the last couple of years. However, when the new Congress came in, their numbers were trumpeted all over the front pages as a mark of their ability to fix things in Washington. Why the sudden silence?

Interestingly, the group of organization that received the highest marks of confidence from the American public in the latest poll? The United States military, which came in at a whopping 69 percent approval. One would think that military-bashers like Harry Reid (D- Nevada) and Nancy Pelosi (D- California) might want to take that into consideration the next time they open their defeatist mouths. After all, the US military in the last four years has overthrown two dictatorships and freed millions of people while being led in a resolute manner by their Commander in Chief. What have Pelosi and Reid accomplished, other than giving aid and comfort to the enemies of the United States?

Follow the Money

Reporters constantly deny that they are biased in favor of left-wing politics, though somehow their reporting always seems to be more favorable towards Democrats and leftist than Republicans and conservatives. One certainly cannot remember any event similar to the attempt by Dan Rather and CBS News to use forged documents to bring down a sitting President performed by newspeople as regards Democrats. Even the $90,000 in cash found in Louisiana Democrat William Jefferson's freezer wasn't enough for reporters to bring some balance to their campaign to elect Democrats in the last elections.

However, there has rarely been more definitive proof of just how partisan reporters are than this report just released by MSNBC, which found that reporters donate to left-wing organizations over conservative organizations by a 9 to 1 margin. And many of these donors are in positions where they have enormous influence on what America sees or reads about in the news.

New Yorker magazine writer Mark Singer is fairly representative when he said,
"Probably there should be a rule against it," said New Yorker writer Mark Singer, who wrote the magazine's profile of Howard Dean during the 2004 campaign, then gave $250 to America Coming Together and its get-out-the-vote campaign to defeat President Bush. "But there's a rule against murder. If someone had murdered Hitler — a journalist interviewing him had murdered him — the world would be a better place. I only feel good, as a citizen, about getting rid of George Bush, who has been the most destructive president in my lifetime. I certainly don't regret it."

Like most journalists, Singer is entitled to his opinion. However, leaving aside the propriety of comparing George Bush, an elected President with Adolf Hitler, an appointed leader who then seized power illegally, is the fact that if Singer holds views this strong, then how can he be trusted to present the news fairly? In talk radio, the opinions of the host are on full display- listeners know what they are getting. the same is true in the blogosphere, in the main.

The New Yorker seems to have special problems with bias by their staff. According to the MSNBC article,
The last bulwark against bias’s slipping into The New Yorker is the copy department, whose chief editor, Ann Goldstein, gave $500 in October to, which campaigns for Democrats and against President Bush. "That's just me as a private citizen," she said. As for whether donations are allowed, Goldstein said she hadn't considered it. "I've never thought of myself as working for a news organization."

Really, Ms. Goldstein? then what exactly do you define the New Yorker as? An entertainment magazine? A sports magazine? It is fairly easy to identify it as a news source, yet the staff seems to have no problem using their power to push public opinion the way they want it to go.

It seems that for mainstream media, it is easy to suppress their biases in favor of objective reporting. Seeing as how the same reporters claim that they are able to rise above bias, yet are unable to credit conservatives with this ability, it seems only reasonable to doubt that they are able to do so either. Personally, I see people like Goldstein and Singer as less journalists than propagandists- more akin to Joseph Goebbels than to Ernie Pyle. And the only recourse is for America to continue to punish their employers in the pocketbook. If no one reads them, then their opinions do not matter.

As Michael Ledeen likes to say, "Faster, please".

06/22/2007 UPDATE: My apologies- I forgot to paste in the link to the actual MSNBC article. I have fixed it now.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Carter's Wonderland

Jimmy Carter has made himself a public disgrace for his post-presidential antics, including snuggling up to dictators like Kim Il Sung of North Korea, Fidel Castro of Cuba and Ayatollah Khomeini of Iran. He has also made himself into the most anti-American president in history, running from country to country to accuse the U.S. of crimes that exist mostly in his own mind and those of his demented, Communistic supporters. And he hass called George W. Bush "the worst president in American history" on a number of occcasions.

So let's recap: Under George Bush Muslims have not been able to attack the United States proper since 2001, American forces have defeated the Islamic forces on every battlefield, and driven a Muslim-supporting dictator out of power, the economy is humming along with 4.5 percent unemployment and a so-called Misery Index (inflation rate plus unemplyment) of roughly 7 percent, and the U.S is slowly reversing the Islamic world's impression of the U.S. as a cowardly lion. In addition, the U.S military is the best trained, best equipped and most adaptable force on Earth, and European governments that openly despised Bush have been replaced with leaders who know that the U.S. is the last, best hope against Islamic terror.

Under Carter the United States was under constant attack, including having an entire Embassy held captive for 445 days, we gave away many of our most important military assets (the Panama Canal, among others), the military was in a state of deep depression with outdated equipment, the economy was simultaneously in a severe recession and inflation and the Misery Index hovered at roughly twenty-one percent. in addition, unemployment was at 7 percent. And global leaders held no respect for our capabilities. Including the Soviet Union, which invaded Afghanistan on Carter's watch.

Tell me again who is the worst president in history, Mr. Carter? A look at the records does not seem to support your thesis.

His latest attack on his own country occurred at a non-Governmental Organization conference in Ireland, where he received roughly 700 million dollars in return for once again bashing his native country.

The RTE News in Ireland reported,
[Irish] Minister for Foreign Affairs Dermot Ahern has signed an agreement to provide €600,000 in aid to the foundation of visiting former US president Jimmy Carter.

The money will be provided over three years and go towards supporting the Foundation’s work in the areas of election monitoring and democratic reform.

President Carter addressed the Department’s 9th annual NGO forum on human rights at Croke Park.

He said that the US has abandoned its role as a champion of human rights in the aftermath of the 11 September attacks.

Mr Carter pointed to the torture of detainees, the denial of the applicability of the Geneva Convention and the erosion of civil liberties within the United States.

This sparked Michelle Malkin, Ed Morrissey and John Hinderaker to remind us of Carter's ineptitude in office and his near-treason since George Bush was elected.

Said Morrissey,
Bush’s refusal to engage with a terrorist group — one that has long been on the State Department list of outlawed terrorist organizations — is “criminal”. Wouldn’t it literally have been a criminal act to engage with Hamas? Federal law prohibits such direct contacts and the transmission of aid to terrorist groups such as Hamas.

Even more ridiculous, Carter feels that we should applaud the organizational skills of a terrorist group that just murdered its way to the top of the Gaza power structure. He applauds their “superior skills and discipline,” while turning a blind eye to the ways in which they apply them. Rather than scold them for using violence to achieve their political goals, Carter wants the global community to welcome and reward them for it.

Captain Ed was seconded by John Hinderaker's analysis of the video of the event over at the Power Line, wherein he wrote,
“So there you have it: in the perverse world of Jimmy Carter, the United States is a criminal nation that destroys civil liberties, tortures prisoners and oppresses Palestinians. But the Iran-controlled terrorists of Hamas? No problem.”

And Michelle Malkin reminded us of Carter,
Who is America’s worst president? Jimmy Carter reconfirms it every time he opens his mouth.

The authoritative record of Carter's disastrous Presidency can be found at the Investor's Businesss Daily, where a series of articles covers Profile In Incompetence: A 10-Part Series on the Worst President in American History. Read the whole thing, and be glad that Carter was defeated in 1980, as otherwise, we would be in far worse shape than we are now. At least Bush understands that appeasing dictators and would-be dictators is a Bad Thing. Carter would have probably given the Muslim radicals most of North America by now were he in office and we would find ourselves in a real theocracy.

Hat tip to Michelle Malkin for her incomparable round-up of Carter's latest disgraceful action and the commentary by others in the blogosphere.

Two for One in 2008

If Hillary Clinton wins the 2008 Presidential election, then according to the London Telegraph, the United States will get two Presidents for the price of one. The Telegraph reports,
Carl Bernstein, one of the reporters who broke the Watergate scandal which brought down Richard Nixon, told The Daily Telegraph that the couple would operate a joint presidency in which Bill would advise on policy and tactics as well as act as trouble shooter.

"There is no question in my mind it would be a co-presidency because he has better judgment than she does on most political matters. He would be a constant presence," said Mr Bernstein.

Captain Ed asks the question, If Bill has better political judgment than Hillary, then why isn't the Democratic Party looking for a President who can stand on his/her own two feet instead?. This is so true. It is becoming more and more apparent that the Democrats are trying to bring back a second Bill Clinton Presidency under the auspices of his wife.

Didn't we already try this two-for-one idea in 1992? And my memory says that it was not much of a success. However the more important point is that if this report is true, it also brings up a Constitutional question. The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution clearly limits Presidents to serving only two terms. Yet it seems that the Clintons are trying to make an end-run around this by having Hillary President in name while Bill actually runs the country. One would question how a judge would interpret this, but I think the only legal answer would be for the Judiciary to make sure Bill has no policy role whatsoever in her new government.

This seems to me to be precisely the kind of situation that the 22nd Amendment was designed to prevent. But it perfectly sums up the Clintons' approach to life- if the letter of the law prevents it, find a way to sneak around so that they can continue to do what they wish. Look at Hillary's commodities trading. There seems to be little doubt that she broke the spirit of the law if not the letter, yet it benefitted her, so the law was seen as no barrier. This idea of being above the law was also on view in Bill's troubles with his various floozies. The Clinton Presidency has often been called "imperial" in nature, and Hillary's influence in it was immense. Do we really want to go through all this again? And this time, we would have President Hillary- a confirmed ideologue as opposed to the essentially lazy Bill. We can only hope that the American pepole will reject this attempt at the ballot box.

Hat tip to Ed Morrissey.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

俺はアメリカ人 - Ore wa amerikajin

That means "I am an American" in Japanese. And to be an American can mean many things. You could have been born in China, or you could be a third-generation Mexican-American, or your family could date its American presence back to 1620. However, there are certain things that all Americans have historically shared.

A understanding and belief in the God-given rights that underlie the Constitution. A belief in the Christian ideal of charity and personal responsibility. And the English language.

Like it or not, the United States is a country built on English common-law traditions, Protestant Christianity and the English language. And until very recently, immigrants coming to this country understood that they were stepping into a culture built on these principles and that it was their responsibility to adapt and fit in. But in the last fifty years, something has changed. The new immigrants, many off them from south of the border, have decided that they want to change this country into what they are trying to escape. It is OK to build little cultural walls around one's community and never bother to learn the overarching culture. And of course learning English is out of the question. But the saddest part of the new immigration lobby is their habit of demonizing immigrants who have succeeded through their unerstanding of the need to assimilate.

In today, Mary Katherine Ham has a wonderful article discussing three immigrants- Al Pacino, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jessica Alba- who emphasize their American-ness, not their original nationalities. Alba, for example, is quoted as saying,
Alba is my last name and I'm proud of that. But that's it. My grandparents were born in California, the same as my parents, and though I may be proud of my last name, I'm American. Throughout my whole life, I've never felt connected to one particular race or heritage, nor did I feel accepted by any.


He tried to forget his Mexican roots, because he never wanted his kids to be made to feel different in America. He and my grandmother didn't speak Spanish to their children. Now, as a third-generation American, I feel as if I have finally cut loose.

Nor should she. She is of a family that correctly understood that to emphasize their Mexican heritage was to damage their descendants' chances of success in their new country. Jessica has succeeded, in part due to her complete acceptance of U.S. culture. In the same vein, the Austrian-born governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger recently told an audience of Hispanics,
"You've got to turn off the Spanish television set" and avoid Spanish-language television, books and newspapers, the Republican governor said Wednesday night…

"You're just forced to speak English, and that just makes you learn the language faster," Schwarzenegger said.

"I know this sounds odd and this is the politically incorrect thing to say, and I'm going to get myself in trouble," he said, noting that he rarely spoke German and was forced to learn English when he emigrated from Austria.

And yet Schwarzenegger succeeded in Hollywood despite his originally impenetrable accent. He made himself into a passably good actor, and has now risen to be governor of California by downplaying his roots and working very hard to master English and assimilate into American culture and society.

Al Pacino also looks at immigration differently from the mainstream lobby. He said recently,
Explain to me what Italian-American culture is. We've been here 100 years. Isn't Italian-American culture American culture? That's because we're so diverse, in terms of intermarriage. Most everybody who's Italian is half Italian. Except me. I'm all Italian. I'm mostly Sicilian, and I have a little bit of Neapolitan in me. You get your full dose with me.

Pacino also has it right. Immigrants who come to American wanting to become Americans usually end up contributing to the American culture. Chinese, Italians, English, Irish, Japanese, and many other races have contributed. But most of these groups have also become Americanized, assimilating into the culture. And American culture, unlike Chinese or Japanese or Mexican culture is very welcoming as a rule. Most Americans don't really care where you're from if you genuinely want to be an American we'll usually help you make it. Try becoming an accepted member of society in Asia if you were not born Asian. Try being accepted in Muslim territory if you were born Christian.

But the immigration lobby (who seems not to care for LEGAL immigrants, only illegal ones), has a whole different take on the issue. For them, if an immigrant wants to assimilate, it is betrayal. As Alex Nogales said in response to Schwarzengger's talk about assimilating, "I'm sitting shaking my head not believing that someone would be so naive and out of it that he would say something like that,".

It is Nogales who is naive, unless he is simply focused on destroying the United States by inundating it with Mexican illegals. When immigrants move to someone else's country, they must assimilate. It is not Americans' responsibility to change to fit the immigrant; it is the immigrants' job to become American. When I lived in Japan, it was always I who was expected to adapt in order to fit in. This is only right- it is not my country. But in America, we have the same right to expect immigrants to become Americans- not the other way around. And it is sad that so many of our elected leaders simply do not understand this.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Home Improvement

For the divine Miss M. Wow! The indefatigable Michelle Malkin has completely redesigned her site, and it is a joy to navigate. Congratulations to Michelle on her third anniversary in the blogosphere, and don't forget to visit and add your compliments.

Hat tip to Power Line.

Talking about 2008

...the only thing we are sure of is that no one with the surname of Bush is running. However, everything else is pretty much up in the air. Michael Barone has written a thoughtful essay discussing what may happen in the upcoming 2008 campaign.

Although he dissects the political atmosphere at some length, Barone's main suggestion is that,
Now we seem to be entering a new period, a period of open-field politics. It seems to be a time when there are no permanent alliances, when new leaders arise with new strategies and tactics, when the voters, instead of forming themselves into two coherent and cohesive armies, wander about the field, attaching themselves to one band and then another, with no clear lines of battle and no landmarks to rally beside.

He goes on to compare the coming election with three somewhat similar situations and comes up with the 1992 Labour win in the United Kingdom, the 1952 Eisenhower win in the United States and 1992 run of Ross Perot. His own opinion seems to be that the 1952 scenario is the most likely, though he stops short of predicting that Republicans will retake the Congress. I am not sure I agree with all of Barone's opinions on the election, but as always, he offers eminently intelligent and well-reasoned thoughts. Read the whole thing.

Hat tip to Power Line.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Hamas Wins

It appears that the Hamas group has won the civil war in Gaza. This can be either a curse or a blessing. Now that there is no pretense of a moderate government in Gaza, Israel can do as it pleases, without needing to consider the ramifications from the usual suspects. And Hamas now controls all the levers of government, having killed off their opponents in the Fatah gang. So they will be forced to accept some responsibility.

However, the bad news is that Gaza is now under the complete control of as terrorist group that has made no secret of its desire to destroy Israel. So for Israel, the war that Hamas has been wanting cannot be far off. If I were the Prime Minister, i would be calling up my armed forced in readiness for the inevitable attack.

One does wonder- is Hamas' complete victory enough to make the Drive-By Media realize what a real civil war looks like? Or are they still trying to convince us that Iraq is a "civil war" but somehow Gaza is not? Oh, I forgot. The Gaza war cannot be blamed on George Bush very easily, so "move along folks- nothing to see here" appears to be the order of the day for our so-called "mainstream media".

It Lives!

Just as Michelle Malkin and other commentators warned, the illegal alien amnesty has arisen from the grave. The Houston Chronicle reported this morning that
"Senate leaders, under intense pressure from immigrant-rights groups, the business sector and the White House, agreed Thursday on a plan to revive an immigration bill sidetracked last week by partisan clashes and conservative opposition.


The move to offer the downpayment on border and interior enforcement marks an attempt to quell a revolt by Americans bombarding senators with angry phone calls, e-mails and faxes. Their message: We've got no faith that you'll actually enforce the law or increase border security.

Well, yes, that is precisely the point. Every time our elected representatives in Washington do something about the "immigration problem" it seems they only try to make it easier for undesirable illegal aliens to get citizenship. No wonder that the American people do not trust Congress on this issue, considering how many times we have been told that enforcement will happen, yet somehow, as Malkin has documented, illegal aliens still are able to game the system to get multiple chances- something not even US citizens receive from the courts. Is US citizenship something that ought to be given away to anyone who thinks they deserve it?

It seems to me that we need to make it much more of a privilege. We already make those who are willing to come here legally go through a very painful process. What exactly is the rationale in putting illegal aliens, who by definition have already broken our laws, before those who have patiently stood in line? Legal immigrants are very welcome, but I have no sympathy whatsoever for illegal aliens. Their countries certainly do not extend the privileges they are asking for to illegal aliens back home. Why should we extend rights to people who have not done anything to earn them, and who have shown their contempt for our laws by their very behavior in coming here illegally?

Contact your representative via the hotline number listed below:

Spurs' Sweep

The San Antonio Spurs basketball team claimed the National Basketball Association championship last night, completing a four-game sweep of the Cleveland Cavaliers. This marks the fourth NAB championship for the franchise since 1999, allowing them entry into a very select group of teams.

Including the 1999-2007 Spurs, only the 1991-1998 Chicago Bulls, 1980-1988 Los Angeles Lakers, 1957-1965 Boston Celtics and 1949-1954 Minneapolis Lakers have won four or more titles in a single decade. The Spurs also join the list of franchises with four or more titles.

Congratulations to the San Antonio Spurs for their championship.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Democratic "Support"

Democrats like to claim they support the troops. However, they showed this week that their idea of support is more akin to supporting the enemies of those troops.

Senate majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada sparked the issue by apparently referring to Marine Corps General Peter Pace, the outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as being "incompetent". This characterization apparently took place during a phone call with left-wing bloggers, and as of today, no Democrat has publicly aknowleged that Reid did in fact refer to Pace in that manner.

However, the report appears to be factual, according to a story by Associate Press writer Anne Flaherty on Yahoo! News today, in which
Reid, D-Nev., went further Thursday when he said he was happy to hear of Pace's departure. The majority leader stopped short of calling Pace incompetent and declined to confirm a report in "The Politico" that he had done so earlier in the week in a private phone call to a group of liberal bloggers.

But he essentially said as much when he told reporters that Pace "had not done a very good job in speaking out for some obvious things that weren't going right in Iraq."

The Democrats further showed their unfitness to lead when "Rep. Ellen O. Tauscher, D-Calif., said Wednesday she thought Pace was guilty of a dereliction of duty because of his support for Bush's Iraq policy."

This shows only how out-of-touch the Democrats really are. To show support for one's Commander-in-Chief is definitely NOT a dereliction of duty, and if Ms. Tauscher had any real knowledge of war and strategy, she would know that. The Joint Chiefs of Staff are bound to defend their country and they swear an oath to that effect. In addition, reports from independent sources show that the Iraq campaign is not the disaster that the Democrats and their media enablers like to pretend. Ms. Tauscher also showed where the Democrats' real priorities lie when she said
Pace lost standing among members in March when he said homosexual acts were immoral and that the military should not condone the behavior by letting gays serve openly.

If Democrats spent as much effort defending the United States as they do trying to censor people's honest opinions, then maybe we would not have such worries about their fitness for high office.

Duff Wilson = Paid Hack

Duff Wilson, supposedly a professional reporter, has spent the entirety of the Duke lacrosse rape hoax acting as if he were a paid propagandist for disgraced Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong. From his initial coverage of the case, in which he practically accused the defendents of rape, to his latest piece of hackery, wherein he attempts to spin Nifong's ethics trial as somehow exonerating Nifong, he stands as an example of "journalism" at its worst. Race-baiting, misleading articles and flat-out lies are Wilson's stock-in-trade, it appears.

Today, we are offered an excellent opportunity to compare Wilson's "coverage" of Nifong's ethics trial with the coverage provided by Associated Press reporter Aaron Beard.

Beard reports accurately that even the lab director, Dr. Brian Meehan, admitted that he agreed with Nifong to withhold results from DNA testing that proved conclusively that the three Duke students did not rape Crystal Mangum. This shows that Nifong deliberately broke the law in an attempt to convict three innocent people.

Wilson? He tries to spin the trial so that Nifong emerges as a victim and definitely not responsible for the attempt to hide evidence that was favorable to the defense. One can only wonder who is paying for Wilson's propaganda. Surely even the New York Times, despite being known more for its treasonous attempts to assist our Islamic enemies, must have a few standards of accuracy in cases where the accused have been so publicly vindicated.

Hat tip to Durham-in-Wonderland.

Czech Sense

Almost alone among modern politicians, the president of the Czech Republic, one Vaclav Klaus, seems to understand the real priorities of international relations. Despite the clamor from the media about global warming, President Klaus wrote an opinion piece for the Financial Times in which he warns that freedom, not climate is at risk.

Peresident Klaus writes,
As someone who lived under communism for most of his life, I feel obliged to say that I see the biggest threat to freedom, democracy, the market economy and prosperity now in ambitious environmentalism, not in communism. This ideology wants to replace the free and spontaneous evolution of mankind by a sort of central (now global) planning.

The environmentalists ask for immediate political action because they do not believe in the long-term positive impact of economic growth and ignore both the technological progress that future generations will undoubtedly enjoy, and the proven fact that the higher the wealth of society, the higher is the quality of the environment. They are Malthusian pessimists.

It is too bad that President Klaus is in the minority. Reporters and politicians, neither group of which is at all knowledgable about climatology may push the global warming hysteria for their own (global governmental) gains, but those of us who wish to continue to live in a free society must push back. Greenpeace and other equally extreme organizations don't like us to recall the hysteria they pushed a mere forty years ago about the "next ice age". They hope that we will forget that they have yet to be correct on a single one of their doomsday predictions, and their shills in the mainstream media are doing everything they can to help in this rush to hysteria.

President Klaus closes with an admirable list of suggestions for those in both politics and in journalism:

  • Small climate changes do not demand far-reaching restrictive measures

  • Any suppression of freedom and democracy should be avoided

  • Instead of organising people from above, let us allow everyone to live as he wants

  • Let us resist the politicisation of science and oppose the term “scientific consensus”, which is always achieved only by a loud minority, never by a silent majority

  • Instead of speaking about “the environment”, let us be attentive to it in our personal behaviour

  • Let us be humble but confident in the spontaneous evolution of human society. Let us trust its rationality and not try to slow it down or divert it in any direction

  • Let us not scare ourselves with catastrophic forecasts, or use them to defend and promote irrational interventions in human lives.

This seems like a wonderful idea. Usually, allowing people to reach their ideas on their own is a better path than forcing change from above. Communism versus the free market provides and excellent example of this, as President Klaus notes. We can only hope that the agenda-driven politicians and media are listening to President Klaus' voice of reason.

For myself, I do not know whether global warming is real or not, though I admit I tend toward skepticism, as I remember the equally strong push for a "global ice age" in the 1970s. But I do know that central planning of the sort being pushed by environmentalists, media and many politicians has never shown good results. So perhaps we should be wary about the motives of those pushing it now.

06/15/2007 UPDATE: Lumo over at The Reference Frame has put together a handy list of the blogs who picked up on President Klaus' remarks and was kind enough to include StoneHeads. I recommend dropping over to his blog and taking a look around- there is some very interesting stuff.

Pelosi's Perks

Nancy Pelosi has made a name for herself in her short tenure as Speaker as someone who demands privileges not granted to previous Speakers. Readers might recall how she demanded a larger plane for herself in her first days as Speaker, and also wanted to allow her friends and family to use said plane a they wished.

Now Pelosi has upped the ante in her search for more perks and privileges. According to The Hill newspaper, Pelosi now wants to force the Defense Department to chauffeur her adult children around the world at taxpayer expense. Pelosi attempted to justify her demands by saying,

“It has been longstanding policy that, in the absence of a congressional spouse, the adult child of a member of Congress may accompany the member on official U.S. government travel abroad for protocol reasons and without reimbursing the U.S.
Treasury,” Pelosi spokesman Nadeam Elshami said. “Speaker Pelosi believes that a modern policy must reflect the professional responsibilities or health realities that might prevent a spouse from participating, and instead permit an adult child to fulfill the protocol needs of the official trip.”

Um, no, Madame Speaker. According to the Defense Department, "...the policy is that the Treasury must be reimbursed at commercial rates for children who accompany members on such trips, often called codels." The only exception to this policy is the children of the sitting President, who obviously warrant special treatment due to their standing as targets.

This is another act in a pattern of arrogance from the new Democratic leadership. Apparently they believe that they somehow deserve treatment above and beyond that accorded to all previous members of Congress. And they show the traditional lack of respect for taxpayer money that has been a hallmark of Democrats since the Great Society. The Defense Department should say no to Pelosi's demands, unless the California Democrat is prepared to reimburse taxpayers as has been the policy in the past. Pelosi is a very rich woman- there is no reason for taxpayers to pay for her adult children's travel. if she wants them with her, she can certainly afford to apy for their travel out of her own pocket.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Immigration and Approval

The immigration shamnesty bill is apparently not dead. that is a disappointment. However, there is hope. Rasmussen polls reported today that support for the bill is far greater amongst Congress than American voters.

Rasmussen says on their website,
Just 20% of American voters want Congress to try and pass the immigration reform bill that failed in the Senate last week.


Sixty-nine percent (69%) of voters would favor an approach that focuses exclusively on “exclusively on securing the border and reducing illegal immigration.” Support for the enforcement only approach comes from 84% of Republicans, 55% of Democrats, and 69% of those not affiliated with either major party.

In a related study, Rasmussen found that President Bush's approvals dipped to 33 percent when immigration is the major topic. However, interestingly, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's favorable rating is merely half of that, coming in at a measly 19 percent.

This should tell Congress that it might be better to wait and put together something that the public approves of, as opposed to trying to please the illegal alien lobby. It would help, of course, if our elected officials would actually realize that illegals have no right to be in this country and that there are many well-qualified, would-be legal immigrants who have patiently waited and done things thAT right way that should be given the privilege of US residence before a bunch of uneducated criminals.

Don't let this monstrosity become law. Contact your congressman and let him or her know your displeasure with this bill now. As Michelle Malkin has tirelessly documented, the current state of affairs is to game the system to let the illegal win. This is reprehensible. But the only way to kill this thing is to stay vigilant. And step one is to kill this immigration bill. Don't forget to ask your elected officials, "What part of "illegal" do you fail to understand?"

Who's Censoring Whom?

Democrats and leftists love to cry "censorship" when their views are met with the public's fury. Who can forget how the Dixie Chicks were shunned by country-music fans after their astonishingly naive trashing of their own country from London? No government action was taken against them, yet the trio immediately claimed censorship.

Thus, it falls to us to remind the Left what REAL censorship looks like. As World Net reminds us, today is the one-year anniversary of a pair of New Jersey Democrats attempting to ban Ann Coulter's books from New Jersey bookstores.

And Broward County in Florida is also trying to get into the censorship headlines. Florida's Sun-Sentinel Times reported today that Broward County officials refused to renew a deal with a local radio station to broadcast hurricane information because the station also hosts Rush Limbaugh.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is censorship. Using the power of government to try to silence opinions with which one does not agree is censorship. And has anyone noticed that it is Democrats and leftists, not Republicans and conservatives, who try to silence their opponents? When was the last time a Republican tried to silence a voice of opposition by bringing the power of government to bear?

But Democrats and their ideological allies have a long history of doing exactly that. Whether it is passing Jim Crow laws or filibustering the Civil Rights bill, or Communists putting their political opponents in gulags, Leftists are the proponents of true censorship. And the Democrats are the party that has tried its best to use government power to silence their opponents. So it is somewhat ironic that the media is such enablers of the party that has a track record of real censorship, as opposed to merely presenting their arguments and letting the people decide.

Highlighting Earmarks

Or not. When Democrats came to power in the recent midterm elections, they promised to clean up the "culture of corruption" as Nancy Pelosi termed it at the time. However, they have failed so signally in this,that even their enablers in the mainstream media have begun to notice. Mark Tapscott over at the San Francisco Examiner website has a wonderful roundup of the comments from the media on the Democrats' failure to clean up earmarks, entitled Even the TV News Folks See the Earmrk games Being Played in Congress Now.

Tapscott's roundup shows that even the partisan and biased MSM can't entirely ignore how spectacularly the Democrats have failed. And not only have they failed, with embarrassments like Representative Murtha, William Jefferson and David Obey they have shown that they are perhaps even more deeply embedded into the culture of corruption than were the Republicans they so rightly blasted during the last elections.

And in the worst blow of all, the American public has not failed to notice the lack of leadership and the corruption the Democrats brough to Congress. According to CNN's John Roberts, only 27 percent of Americans approve of Congress- even lower than the Republican Congress the Democrats defeated. As a side point, this is almost as low as the President's job approval rating. Democrats were elected because of the disgust with Republican excesses. However, the Democrats have shown that not only are they unable to take global Islamic terror seriously, they cannot take domestic corruption seriously either- especially when they are so much the beneficiaries.

It is times like this when I wish there were a substantial third party. Neither of the two major parties has really established that they are capable of dealing with the problems America faces, though at least most Republicans seem to understand the international stakes better than most Democrats. But if there were a viable alternative, I think that many Americans would be interested. And this has to worry both parties in the run up to 2008

Hat tip to Ed Morrissey.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Border Corruption

It appears the corruption associated with open borders has even ensnared U.S National Guardsmen. The Star-Telegram reported that three National Guardsmen were arrested for running an illegal-alien smuggling ring in Texas' Tamant County. And at least one of them, Jose Torres, was in uniform at the time he was arrested. The paper reported that,
A Border Patrol agent found 24 illegal immigrants inside a van Torres was driving along Interstate 35 near Cotulla, Texas, about 68 miles north of the border, prosecutors said. Torres was in uniform at the time of his arrest Thursday.

This is why we need to shut off the border. It's time to put the regular Army down there and remove the temptations for coyoptes and illegals to try to game the system. Build a real wall, fine illegals caught here with stiff penalties and hit employers with crippling fines and prison sentences if necessary. For the illegal aliens themselves, make it soe that if they are caught, any and all assets acquired in this country will be immediately confiscated, and seize all wages earned. In addition, Mexico shoudl be charged the fees associated with the repatriation of illegal aliens.

It is high time that we cease this charade, and shut down the border. Until we do that, any talk of "homeland security" is simply that- talk.

Fluff or Falsehoods?

Media watchdog site Newsbusters reported today that Dan Rather has eschewed a quiet retirement in favor of attacking Katie Couric's anchorship of CBS Evening News as dumbing down and "tarting up" the news. As one might suspect, Rather also found time to attack the Iraq campaign and call for a "strategic withdrawal".

I am no fan of Katie Couric, who has a long history of proviing less-than-accurate "news" and of spinning any topic she can to support her favorred political agenda. She is less az reporter than a mere newsreader. However, setting aside the sexism inherent in Rather's rants, I find that "dumbed down" news is preferred to "news" that is created out of whole cloth in hopes of destroying a political leader that the news media dislikes. This was rather obviously the case in Mary Mapes' and Dan Rather's use of forged documents to try to throw the 2004 election to John Kerry.

On Rather's call for a "strategic withdrawal" from Iraq, he once again shows that, like most reporters, he lacks the expertise or understanding to make any judgement calls on military affairs. Or does he prefer to try to mask his wish for an American defeat in calls for "strategic withdrawal"? Would Rather prefer to see Islamic sharia law in the United States? then by all means, Mr. Rather, continue your campaign, in which I regret to say that most of the media and the Democratic Party shares, to help destroy freedom.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Paris Behind Bars

Maybe some sanity has found its way to our judicial system. It has long been the practice for Hollywood "celebrites" to receive minor slaps on the wrist or no punishment at all for events whioch would land a normal person in jail.

However, as CNN sadly reported this morning, Paris Hilton is going back to jail, despite her attempt to use her personal psychiatrist to weasel out of her 45-day jail sentence. Since I have never understood how an untalented, less-than-intelligent person like Hilton ever managed to become a "celebrity" anyway, I am quite pleased by this decision. If more of these extremely minor "celebrities" were put in their place a little more often, perhaps our society would be better off.

Shamnesty Tabled

Excellent News! The attempt by our elected representatives in the Congress to legalize a massive invasion of illegal aliens has been temporarily derailed. Throughout this brazen attempt to push through a massive amnesty, the blogosphere has been doing a far better job of coverage than the so-called professionals in the MSM. Michelle Malkin, Captain Ed and the Power Line crew have all done outstanding work on the story. The MSM prefers to merely parrot the talking points of the illegal alien lobby than actually investigate the issues.

However, even the Associated Press has awoken from their propagandistic stupor long enough to recognize that the shamnesty is at least temporarily dead. Unfortunately, as the AP writers mention,
The White House argued the setback was not fatal for Bush's top domestic priority and urged Reid to allow the bill to continue to be debated and eventually receive a vote.

This is all too possible. As Michelle Malkin warned,
This is neither the beginning nor the end of the immigration debate. The White House is still trying to push shamnesty through. I predicted a while ago that after the massive amnesty package failed, Congress would break off chunks of the bill and try and pass it piecemeal. I expect that to happen here, as it has repeatedly in the past.

Malkin's word "vigilance" absolutely applies. This Congress and White House has proved on this issue that they care more for illegal aliens than for the law-abiding LEGAL immigrants who wait sometimes for years to gain legal entrance. And they completely disregarded the tax-paying citizens of this country, who were decidedly against this travesty. We must make certain that our representatives know our anger and that their continued attempts to give amnesty to illegal aliens will cost them the next time they want us to re-elect them. Maybe then they will listen harder to their constituents than to Mexico's version of the Ku Klux Klan- also known as La Raza.

My First Acts as Dictator...'s Burt Prelutsky recently fantasized about being dictator of the United States. This raised the thought in my mind as well. Dictatorships do tend to be more efficient than representative democracies. So if I were dictator of the United States, what would I do?

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to be taken as fact, but merely as a wish-list of things that I would like to see occur.

  • Illegal immigrants have no access to US courts.

  • The US Army will be sent to the southern border with orders to stem the invasion using any force necessary.

  • Any illegal found in the United States will have all assets seized and will be used as unpaid labor on the wall that the Corps of Engineers will build on the southern border.

  • Any city that is so misguided as to declare itself a sanctuary for illegal aliens will be fined in excess of twenty million dollars and all federal funds will be revoked until that city changes its laws.

  • Illegal aliens will be denied any access to American health care.

  • No longer will birth in the US be automatic citizenship. You must have at least one US parent, who must then will have to apply for citizenship for the new born.

  • Legal immigrants will be sorted by their value to the United States, not by how many family they possess.

  • All prospective immigrants to the United States must pass a standard university-level test of English, US history and civics and swear an oath of allegiance.

  • All government agencies will be evaluated on the basis of performance and customer service. Any employee who fails will be terminated.

  • All brakes will be taken off the Armed Forces in attacking the enemies of the United States. If our enemies hide amongst civilians, then civilians will die. That is the fault of the terrorists, not of US soldiers.

  • All foreign aid programs will be discontinued.

  • The UN will be summarily evicted from the United States and all US funding will be withdrawn until such time as the UN gives the US and all other member nations a full and complete accounting of all activities and how it uses said funds.

  • US will create a new international body made up ONLY of representative democracies. China, Russia and all other totalitarian states will not be invited to join.

  • All US soldiers will be withdrawn from Europe, Japan and South Korea. They don't want us? Fine. You're on your own.

  • All domestic subsidy programs will be halted. The federal government is not a nanny. Only national defense and diplomatic operations should be the responsibility of the federal government.

  • All programs not directly related to national defense and diplomacy will be halted .

  • Taxes will be set at a flat rate, and the IRS will be disbanded. No more withholding will occur and there will be no exceptions. The new tax will be on actual total wealth, not on income.

  • The CIA will be disbanded. All intelligence operations will be undertaken by the uniformed members of the US military.

  • Should any American be taken hostage, the United States will retaliate with all available military force against the kidnapper. Should the kidnapper be a nation, then that nation will suffer militarily.

  • Any member of Congress who gives aid to our enemies in any way will be charged with treason.

  • Term limits would be imposed on all offices, including my own. No Senator can serve more than two terms, Representatives serve a maximum of four terms and judges can serve a maximum of ten years. Lawyers are prohibited from serving as judges- they lack too much common sense.

  • Any journalist or news organ who publishes confidential information that can be proved to have aided the enemy will be charged with treason.

  • US courts will not be allowed authority over adoptions. Once a baby is given up for adoption, the act is irrevocable.

  • All domestic energy will be supplied by nuclear power plants, supplemented where possible by wind turbines, solar and other alternative energy sources.

  • All vehicles must run on electricity within five years, with recharging stations at regular intervals to replace gasoline stations.

I'm sure that there are more dictats I could issue, but these are a good start. Of course I am sure you noticed that if I were indeed dictator, the US would no longer be a representative democracy. However, many of these ideas could be brought to fruition, if only we had a populace who were engaged and interested. A strong President and a cooperative Congress could execute many of these ideas, should they be more interested in the welfare of the United States than in feathering their personal nests. the Republicans failed, and the Democrats thus far have shown themselves even more corrupt than the Republicans in their brief tenure.

If you have any ideas of your own, feel free to post them in the comments. I am sure that there are more good ideas I have missed.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

News Flash- Palestinian "Leaders" Are Gangsters!

The Muslim residents of Gaza have long held a very favorable opinion of the murderous thugs and terrorists who claim membership in organizations such as Hamas, Fatah and other similar terrorist organizations. However, since electing them to positions of power after Israel withdrew, they have more and more shown their true colors as gangsters who yearn merely for power. This has understandably upset their heretofore loyal peonage.

These colors have become so easy to discern that even propaganda outlet Reuters has belatedly recognized them. According to Reuters employee Wafa Amr, quoting a Palestinian legislator,
"Many of these groups are now a burden on society. They were created to fill a security vacuum under the pretext of national resistance, said legislator Nasser Jum'a, once a leading member of Fatah's al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.

"They then blackmailed people, attacked them and confiscated their freedoms as the weak official security forces failed to punish them," he said.


Jum'a said ordinary Palestinians were so fed up with the armed groups "they now wish the Israeli occupation would take over in Gaza or hope for the return of Jordanian rule in the West Bank" to get rid of them.

Well, be careful what you wish for- you may get it. The Gaza Muslims have only themselves to blame for this sorry state of affairs. Israel has made many sincere offers of land for peace, most recently at the ill-fated Oslo conference, but the desire of terrorists like Yasser Arafat for the demise of Israel led them time and again to reject these overtures to the point where Israel finally said "enough is enough".

Maybe the people of Gaza are finally waking up to what rational people have known for years- that the so-called leaders of the "Palestinians" are no better than lawless thugs, and that Israel, which wants only peace with security, is not the cause of this misery after all.

Hat tip to Power Line.

U.S. Resolve-1, Islamic Intimidation-0

Since the case of the Flying Imams that occurred in Minnesota it has become fairly obvious that Islamic groups in the United States are trying to use our own judiciary to scare us into silence about the various plots and terrorist ideals many of these groups support and espouse.

However, as Captain Ed reports on the new site Heading Right, in an article entitled The Unintended COnsequences of Tort Law, it appears that judiical intimidation does not always works the way that Muslim groups would like it to.

The case in question was a lawsuit for libel brought by the Islamic Society of Boston against various persons and groups who had accused them of having links to terror. Said links being fairly well-proven in the ensuing discovery phase, and with even more evidence of wrongdoing both by the City of Boston and the Islamic Society itself, the Muslim group today chose to withdraw the lawsuit.

This is excellent news. As Captain Ed remarks,
"Islamic groups have apparently decided that the way to dhimmitude is to use our legal system to disarm us, allowing them to intimidate us into submission.

It didn’t work in Boston. Let’s hope we remain firm enough to ensure it fails everywhere."

Indeed. As long as we remain resolute, intimidation will never succeed. We can only hope that the defeatists in our media and the Democratic Party take this lesson to heart. Hat tip to Ed Morrissey.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Operation Overlord

The United States is often condemned these days as an oppressor and imperialist. However, we must remind these critics, many of whom reside in Eurpoe, that were it not for a certain operation whose anniversary falls today, most of them would still be speaking German.

I refer of course to the greatest liberation operation ever attempted, the invasion of Normandy that began on June 6, 1944. Involving over 2700 ships, the invasion, code-named Operation Overlord, was the greatest amphibious landing in history. Memorialized by correspondent Cornelius Ryan in his epic book The Longest Day, which inspired a film of the same name, the invasion featured some of the fiercest fighting and greatest bravery of the entire war. On D-day alone over 2400 men were killed at Omaha Beach- nearly as many as have been lost in three years in Iraq. One wonders how the defeatist journalists and pundits of the present day would have spun the awesome casualties taken by the Allies on D-Day. Fortunately, American leaders and journalists of that era were both more patriotic and possessed of more intestinal fortitude.

Today, few remember the sacrifices made by the many men who died in the invasion of France in 1944. But were it not for the efforts of Allied troops (most of whom were British, American and Canadian) in 1944, Hitler's National Socialists might still rule Western Europe. So I remind the Europeans who are so quick to criticise us today- would you rather that we had not liberated you sixty years ago? For Europe, like Iraq and Kuwait, was under the thumb of a brutal dictator, and I can only imagine how the UN would have dealt with that situation, since Hitler would have been entitled by the UN's logic to fill the Security Council seat of France as well as his own.

On Amnesty

Amnesty International, that is. It has long been proclaimed that the organization was created by British lawyer Peter Benenson in 1961 to secure liberty for all political prisoners around the world.

This is a very nice little story. The problem is that it happens to be completely false. According to Claudio Veliz, a Chilean academic who now lives in Australia, Amnesty International was in actuality the brainchild of Communist fellow-traveler Alec Digges, who created it to get Communists and Communist sympathizers out of the prison sentences their violent political inclinations earned for them. How does Veliz know this? He was there at its inception and was a trusted member of the International Brigade that preceded it. For a complete background on this group of fellow-travelers, read the whole thing.

This makes complete sense. Ever notice how Amnesty International is always eager to condemn the United States or Israel for supposed human rights violations, but never seems to have a thought for the inmates of Castro's prisons, or the victims of Islamic terror? They will go out of their way to talk about "rights" for the terrorists held in Camp X-ray at Guantanamo Bay, but will hear nary a harsh word about the much worse-treated prisoners of communist or left-wing totalitarianism around the world. When was the last time you heard Amnesty International condemn China's occupation of Tibet? Or Russia's crackdown on the former states of the Soviet Union such as Ukraine?

We need to open our eyes. Amnesty International is an organization that is dedicated to the defeat of the United States, and to the eventual triumph of Communist totalitarianism. Any moral authority they may have once had was only the authority of useful idiots, and it is high time we unmasked this dangerous and duplicitous group of Communist enablers and apologists.

Hat tip to little green footballs.

Islam & the Left

It is no secret that the political Left in the United States and indeed most of the West has made common cause with the forces of radical Islam. this should come as no surpirse to anyone who has spent any time at all studying either of these two forces.

Islam has spent well over a thousand years conducting bloody imperialism against the world, including the West. The radical Left has spent the majority of the past two hundred years enabling and apologizing for various dictators- Mao Tse-tung, Josef Stalin, Saddam Hussein, Pol Pot, Fidel Castro, Robert Mugabe and of course Yasser Arafat. The Left has spent the majority of the past century trying its best to cause revolution in democratic states that might bring in their preferred form of government- totalitarianism.

Let us not forget that Hitler's war was made possible by his secret alliance with Josef Stalin's Soviet Union. And that the predecessors of today's al-Quaeda, in the person of Yasser Arafat's uncle, Grand Mufti Amin al-Husayni (or al-Husseini) constituted some of the strongest and most fervent supporters of Hitler's "Final Solution". Before there was a state of Israel, mind you.

Of course, the latest collaboration has caused the Left some problems. After all, leftists renounce all religion with great passion. they consider Christianity to be one of the great evils of history, and rarely have a good word for any other religion either. But yet their alliance with Islam requires that they celebrate exactly the kind of religious ecstasy that they find so repugnant in other religions. Christians experience ecstasy in the covenants, or in "being saved", not in blowing up civilians or making onerous pronouncements about how non-Christian must convert or die.

Christopher Hitchens, the anti-religious, pro-Iraq War leftist stepped up on May 24 in Berkeley, California to try to make the Left reconcile this essential dichotomy. His verbal opponent was journalist Chris Hedges. According to Zombie, who photo-blogged the event,
The American political landscape experienced an epochal re-alignment on May 24. A subtle yet far-reaching tectonic shift.

You probably didn't notice. But you will, eventually.

Because it was on that date in Berkeley, California that the radical left reversed what had been its immutable rejection of religion and for the first time embraced spirituality.


The arena where this pivotal re-alignment took place was the King Middle School auditorium in Berkeley, where far-left "progressive" journalist Chris Hedges formally debated iconoclastic "neocon" pundit Christopher Hitchens. (Videos of the debate and photos from the event can be found below.) The topic of the debate was "Is God...Great?", a riff on the title of Hitchens' new book, God Is Not Great.

Surprising as it might seem in a contemporary political landscape where mocking religion is an established liberal pastime, and where Christianity and spirituality are most often associated with conservatism, it was Hitchens -- now loathed by the left for not toeing the party line over the Iraq War -- who attacked religion, while the neo-Socialist, anti-patriotic, radical Hedges volunteered for the seemingly topsy-turvy position of having to defend spirituality and the existence of God.

How did this strange state of affairs come to pass? In one word: Islam.

The left -- of which Hitchens was a part until recently -- has always been anti-religion. But now, they've become caught in a philosophical bind: how can they promote multiculturalism -- and by extension all non-Western cultures, such as fundamentalist Islam -- if they condemn religion in general? Neocon pundits have since 9/11 frequently accused the left of being in bed with Muslim extremists, a charge which the left has vehemently denied. But with every denial their position was becoming more and more untenable, as the verbiage and narratives of Islamic radicals and "anti-war" progressives have grown to become virtually indistinguishable.

Someone had to take the lead and resolve the dilemma that the left had created for itself. And so it was Hedges who stepped forward in this debate to test the waters for the first time, taking what is for him (and the left) a revolutionary position: that spirituality and religion -- with the noteworthy exception of organized Christianity -- is good.

Now, at no point did Hedges state that he was performing this amazing flipflop specifically due to Islam. He didn't need to say it -- because Hitchens said it for him. In fact, Hitchens repeatedly tore the roof off of Hedges' carefully constructed rhetorical edifice, saying aloud the exact thoughts that Hedges and the left didn't want anyone to hear.

OK, let's be frank: Hitchens absolutely mopped the floor with Hedges. It was an embarrassment, really.

Zombie has been kind enough to post the videos on YouTube that he took of the evening's entertainment. Read the whole thing and watch the videos.

The Left in the United States and the rest of the West has become a laughingstock for their persistent hypocrisy and their lack of patriotism. However, it took Hitchens to expose them as nothing more than tired ideas without even a robe in which to hide- unless they want to take the burqa. I hear Islam is always looking for converts...

Hat tip to little green footballs.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Remember Midway!

I have just been reminded by a tremendous post from John in Carolina that I neglected to mark one of the signal events in American history, the Battle of Midway, which took place on June 4-6, 1942.

In that battle, which took place without any ship of either fleet actually sighting each other, an American force of three carriers (USS Enterprise, USS Yorktown and USS Hornet) and associated smalled ships defeated a much larger Japanese force bent on invading Midway island.

This battle, coupled with the Guadalcanal campaign later that same year, marked the end of Japanese expansion in the Pacific. Though Japan would enjoy more success, they were never again on the offensive and the United States had finally turned the corner towards eventual victory. As John writes,
The battle at Midway was one of World War II’s most decisive battles. America's victory there halted the Japanese offensive that began at Pearl Harbor, and enabled the Allies to begin their advance toward Japan.

Beginning on June 4, the battle lasted for three-days. Its decisive action occurred that first day so we mark June 4 as the battle's anniversary.

We must always remember the heroism of the outnumbered, outgunned American fleet, especially the bravery of the torpedo bombers who sacrificed their lives almost to the last man in order for the dive bombers to deliver the fatal blow. Heroism is often forgotten, but the incandescent bravery and patriotism of the American fleet at Midway should stand ass long as the United States itself.

It has become accepted to denigrate the men and women who choose to wear the uniform, but I must ask when a journalist has ever personally acted to ensure free speech or when a politician has ever personally acted to secure free elections. It is the soldier who guarantees these rights, and their sacrifice should be honored, no matter if the eenemy is racist militarism as it was in Imperial Japan, world Communism as in the Soviet Union or Islamic fundamentalism as we face now. Barbarism is barbarism no matter what face it wears or what corrupt ideology it hides behind. And our soldiers are the best guarantor of our safety from barbarism in all its forms.

Hat tip to John in Carolina.

Civil War or Not?

Depends on what agenda you want to push, it seems. As our friend the Confederate Yankee has helpfully posted, the same media who have been telling us for the last two years that Iraq is in a state of civil war are also telling us that the Arabs known as Palestinians are engaging in factional warfare. This despite the fact that Palestinians meet the criteria necessary for a civil war to be internationally recognized. So what are those criteria? Well, according to Global Security,
civil war: A war between factions of the same country; there are
five criteria for international recognition of this status: the
contestants must control territory, have a functioning government,
enjoy some foreign recognition, have identifiable regular armed
forces, and engage in major military operations.

This begs the question of why the same media who want us to believe that Iraq, which meets none of these criteria, is in civil war will also insist that the Palestinians, who meet all of them, are not? Confederate Yankee says,

1. Both Hamas and Fatah control territory.
2. Both Hamas and Fatah have their own political organizations and function (dysfunction) as part of a recognized government.
3. both enjoy some foreign recognition via support from governments such as ours (Fatah) and Iran (Hamas).
4. both have identifiable and mostly uniformed armed forces.
5. both have engaged and continue to engage in major military operations.

By this definition (and others), the Palestinian Civil War in Gaza is clearly underway, and has been for some time.

A supermajority of the world media organizations refuse to recognize this conflict as the civil war that it is.


The war in Iraq is widely described in the world's professional media organizations as a "civil war," even though it clearly fails to satisfy the five criteria noted for international recognition as cited by Global Security above, having no formal armies, no functioning governments, nor major battles, instead revolving around kidnappings, bombing, and other random violence.

Couldn't be bias or maybe a particular agenda, could it? Hat tips to the Confederate Yankee, via the estimable Glenn Reynolds.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Did the Civil War Teach Us Nothing?

If you are a leftist, apparently not. According to the news source, a group of political leftists is attempting to re-run the states Rights movement that was one of the primary reasons for the Civil War.

breitbart reports today that,
Disillusioned by what they call an empire about to fall, a small cadre of writers and academics is plotting political strategy and planting the seeds of separatism.

They've published a "Green Mountain Manifesto" subtitled "Why and How Tiny Vermont Might Help Save America From Itself by Seceding from the Union." They hope to put the question before citizens at Town Meeting Day next March, eventually persuading the state Legislature to declare independence, returning Vermont to the status it held from 1777 to 1791.

Apparently to these folks, the Civil War means nothing. They might be well-served in studying the events leading up to the Civil War, wherein the idea of states being able to secede from the Union was put forth most forcefully by John C. Calhoun, a leading secessionist from South Carolina. These folks might also remember that the idea that states have the right to secede from the Union was proven false by the defeat of the Confederacy in the Civil War of 1861-1865- a defeat in which Vermont played an important part.

It seems that while conservatives respect the rule of law (even those with which they disagree), liberals and leftists only respect laws with which they agree. I only wonder if they are prepared to accept responsibility for the bloodshed that may ensue if they get their wish. But then, accepting responsibility is not something that liberals or leftists are very good at. One has only to review their long enabling of various totalitarian states such as the USSR or Castro's Cuba to understand that when leftists are wrong, they will invariably try to blame others- if they are unable to make people forget the views they espoused for so long.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Return of the ACLU

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), is not interested in defending Americans from terrorism. Nor are they very assertive in trying to stop Muslims from trying to slowly impose sharia law upon the United States. And they certainly would not lift a finger to protect a Christian who is being discriminated against by a non-Christian group or organization.

But as the World Tribune reports today, if you are a Muslim terrorist trying to destroy the United States, the ACLU is more than happy to help you sue an American company who might be cooperating with the U.S. government in trying to keep America safe.

According to the Tribune,
Boeing has been sued by suspected Al Qaida operatives transported by the CIA to Arab countries for interrogation and torture.

The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a federal lawsuit against Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen Dataplan on behalf of three Al Qaida suspects transported by the CIA under the so-called "extraordinary rendition program."

A spokesman for the ACLU told the Tribune "American corporations should not be profiting from a CIA rendition program that is unlawful and contrary to core American values," ACLU executive director Anthony Romero said. "Corporations that choose to participate in such activity can and should be held legally accountable."

there are so many problems with this statement I hardly know where to start. Firstly, the program of holding captured suspected terrorists outside of the United States is not unlawful- the Constitution (which does not confer American rights on non-Americans in any event) stops at the borders of the United States. Secondly, to claim the program is counter to American values shows enormous ignorance of American history. We have certainly done this before- has the ACLU studied the prisoner camps of World War II? Most were outside of the United States. And in any event, the program would probably not be necessary if US judges actually read the Geneva Convention signed and ratified by the United States, instead of inventing new rights out of whole cloth.

However, my biggest problem is with the ACLU itself. This is an organization that did not lift so much as a finger for Daniel Pearl or any other person kidnapped by Muslim terrorists- people who really did face torture and were in fact executed in a barbarous manner. That they should suddenly find common cause with al Quaeda- the organization responsible for said torture- says much more about the ACLU than it does about the program they ostensibly are against.

Campus Leanings

It is no secret that most of the United States' colleges and universities are bastions of the political Left- Socialists, Communists and the like. It is also no secret that conservative or even libertarian teachers are extremely hard to find- particularly in the social sciences and the arts.

However, new evidence of the political leaning of the education system came to light today via the annual Young America's Fuondation report on commencement speakers. According to the Washington Times newspaper, the vast majority of college commencement speaker in 2007 came from the left side of the political spectrum.
"It's not that there's a few cases here and there. It's that there's a consistent pattern where conservatives are shunned," said Jason Mattera, spokesman for YAF. "For 14 years, we've shown that college administrators are using commencement ceremonies to send their students off with one more predictable leftist lecture."
On the group's list of left-leaning speakers were former President Bill Clinton at the University of Michigan, former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Rep. Charles B. Rangel, New York Democrat, at New York University.
The list included "liberal media personalities," such as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and CNN's Wolf Blitzer at George Washington University. With some schools yet to announce their speakers at the time of the review and some schools' speakers listed as neutral, YAF found 42 "blue" speakers and eight "red" speakers.

This doesn't surprise me at all. When I did my undergraduate studies, I was fortunate in that I landed in probably one of the few History programs that had a majority of conservative professors. However, when I took my master's degree, it was very obvious that the faculty were extremely anti-conservative; most of them made no secret of their hatred of the current President, and condemned conservatives in general at every opportunity.

However, I think that commencement speakers' influence is also over-rated. Certainly I spent little time listening to the overblown personalities my various universities brought in to lecture to us, and I think very few students are feeble-minded enough to change their ideas simply because an ex-President or other high-profile person talks to them for an hour or two. I find this survey more indicative of the political state of affairs on campus than anything else.