Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Today's (mostly) political news

Hard Hearted Republicans?
Says who? Why, just Monday night, my wife and I took a homeless couple out to dinner. Unfortunately, they are our friends, John and Donna Payne, whose home in Louisiana burned to the ground Saturday. They lost everything except the luggage they still had here, including stuff they had already shipped home. We took them to the airport at zero-dark Tuesday morning. Regular readers will recall John is the brother Marine who received a lung five days before I did. Now they have this to cope with as well. They were supposed to go home weeks ago, but he had lung issues too, though thankfully not as severe as mine. Maybe it's a blessing--if they were in a fire, the smoke wouldn't help a fragile lung. I suggested the family set up a fund. If they do, I'll post it for anyone interested. Kyrie Eleison. ~Bob

Supreme Court upholds Michigan affirmative action ban
Excerpt: The Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld Michigan's ban on using race as a factor in college admissions. The justices said in a 6-2 ruling that Michigan voters had the right to change their state constitution to prohibit public colleges and universities from taking account of race in admissions decisions. The justices said that a lower federal court was wrong to set aside the change as discriminatory.

Worth Reading: Elites’ Sacrificial Victims: When your goal is to save the planet, you can’t worry about who may get hurt. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: In a word, liberal ideology so often proves more important than people. Noble theories about saving humanity offer exemption from worry about the immediate consequences for individual humans. In a personal sense, those who embrace progressive ideas expect to be excused from the ramifications of their schemes. For the elite who send their kids to prep schools and private academies, public charter schools for the poor are bad, given that they undermine the dream of progressive, union-run education that has turned into a nightmare for those forced to enroll in it.

Don't Mention 'Recovery.' From The Patriot Post
Democrats running for office this fall received some helpful advice from key strategists: "Yeah, that economic recovery... don't mention it." Stan Greenberg, James Carville and others warn that talking about "recovery" ignores "how much trouble people are in, and doesn't convince them that policymakers really understand or are even focusing on the problems they continue to face." In fact, "Democrats should bury any mention of the recovery. That message was tested ... and it lost to the Republican message." That's because the president has had six long years to get the economy off the ground and he's done nothing but add to the burden. Even Obama's low-info voters get that.

Photos Link Masked Men in East Ukraine to Russia
Excerpt: Strenuous denials from the Kremlin have closely followed each accusation by Ukrainian officials that the world was witnessing a stealthy invasion by Russian forces. Now, photographs and descriptions from eastern Ukraine endorsed by the Obama administration on Sunday suggest that many of the green men are indeed Russian military and intelligence forces — equipped in the same fashion as Russian special operations troops involved in annexing the Crimea region in February. 

The Increasing Desperation of Democrats: Slanders and lies may be part of a deliberate strategy to drive up turnout in November. By John Fund
Excerpt: Harry Reid isn’t backing down from his claim that rancher Cliven Bundy’s supporters are “domestic terrorists.” It’s astonishing rhetoric given the White House’s characterization of the mass shooting by a genuine terrorist, Major Nidal Hasan, who killed 13 Americans at the Fort Hood Army base after yelling “Allahu Akbar!” (God is great.) Rather than labeling Hasan’s actions “domestic terrorism,” the Obama administration is prosecuting him for having committed “workplace violence.”

Guy Who Spent His Early Career Insisting He's Pro-Life Now Insists He's Always Been Pro-Choice. By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Seriously, FloridaCome on. There are a lot of Florida Democrats who will probably tell you they care about abortion — er, "abortion rights" or "reproductive rights." The vast majority of them will, this fall, vote for a man who, during his 2006 race for governor, told a priest in Pensacola that he would sign a bill outlawing abortions except when the mother's life was at stake. But then he told an AP reporter that he would only sign such a bill if it included exceptions for rape and incest. During that race, Charlie Crist attacked his GOP rival for being pro-choice. And as recently as January 2010, "Crist's Republican U.S. Senate campaign released a statement saying he would 'fight for pro-life legislative efforts.'" And now he can come along and say, "even though I am pro-life, which I mean, for life, doesn't mean I want to tell a woman what to do with her body, and I never have," and almost every self-proclaimed pro-choice Florida Democrat will nod approvingly. Because they don't give a [insert your colorful metaphor here] what the heck Charlie Crist did in the past. They only care that he has a "D" after his name. (Morning Jolt is free and worth subscribing to. ~Bob)

Worth Reading: Obama Handles Russia Like Republicans: Overpromise, Under-Deliver, and Write Off. Democratic ally says of Obama: "He's just not a natural leader."
Excerpt: That last paragraph reminds me of Democrats who privately gripe about Obama's lack of engagement with Congress, his unwillingness to build meaningful relationships, his allegiance to polls and focus groups, and his cautious nature that, in their minds, holds him back from greatness. "He can't handle Putin. He can't handle Republicans," said a veteran Democratic consultant and part-time adviser to both of Obama's presidential campaigns. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the Democrat told me, "He just is not a natural leader."

A Black Conservative Takes on the 'Poverty Pentagon'
Excerpt: Woodson says the flap over Ryan's comments may end up being beneficial if it sparks the “right conversation” about helping the poor. “Low-income people haven't been on President Obama's agenda for five years,” he says. We'd only add that while low-income people have indeed been left behind in Obama's “recovery,” they have occasionally shown up on his teleprompter.

Worth Reading: The Truth about ‘Wage Discrimination.’ By Walter Williams
Excerpt: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, workers ages 16 to 24 earn only 54 cents on every dollar earned by workers 25 or older (http://tinyurl.com/n6puf6j). This wage gap is 43 percent greater than the male/female gap. Our president, progressives, do-gooders, academics and union leaders show little interest in big, greedy corporations ripping off the nation’s youth. You might say, “Whoa, Williams! There’s a reason younger people earn less than older people. They don’t have the skills or experience.” My response would be — if I shared the vision of the president, media elite and do-gooders: Just as there can be no justification for big, greedy corporations paying women less than they pay men, there’s no justification for them to exploit the nation’s youth. 

Walgreens May Move to Europe for Tax Break
Progressives killing the goose that lays the golden eggs. what else is new? ~Bob. Excerpt: Walgreens' shareholders are pushing the company to move overseas, says the Fiscal Times. Goldman Sachs Investment Partners and several hedge funds together own 5 percent of Walgreens' stock, and they're trying to convince the company to become domiciled overseas in order to reduce its U.S. tax burden. To do this, the company would need for one-fifth of its stock to be held by foreign investors. In 2012, Walgreens purchased half of the Swiss company Alliance Boots; Boots intends to purchase the rest of the company in 2015. Boots' tax rate, according to financial services firm UBS, would be just 20 percent, thanks to its Swiss residence. But Walgreens' U.S. tax rate? 37.5 percent. By redomiciling abroad, Walgreens could increase its earnings per share by a whopping 75 percent.

Blue on Blue: Labor Unions Slam 'Gutless' WH on Keystone Delay. By Guy Benson
Excerpt: The Koch brothers may get the media attention, but the billionaire getting the most political bang for his buck is Tom Steyer. The hedge-fund politico has pledged to raise $100 million to help Democrats keep the Senate, and on Friday he received a major return on his investment when the State Department again delayed its decision on the Keystone XL pipeline ... The real reason for the delay is Democratic politics. Mr. Steyer and the party's liberal financiers are climate-change absolutists who have made killing Keystone a non-negotiable demand. But the White House doesn't want to reject the pipeline before November because several Senate Democrats running for re-election claim to favor it.

Tom Cotton's New Ad Introduces His Drill Sergeant
Gotta love this political ad. ~Bob

Worth Reading: The High Cost of Liberalism. By Thomas Sowell 
Excerpt: Liberals advocate many wonderful things. In fact, I suspect that most conservatives would prefer to live in the kind of world envisioned by liberals, rather than in the kind of world envisioned by conservatives. Unfortunately, the only kind of world that any of us can live in is the world that actually exists. Trying to live in the kind of world that liberals envision has costs that will not go away just because these costs are often ignored by liberals.

It's Not About Cliven Bundy - It's About Harry Reid and a Chinese Energy Giant
Excerpt: 19:01:37 CAROL: We went to the compound where they were holding the cattle that they gathered. We saw a shallow grave that had been dug and covered up and there were, as we uncovered that, there were some of our cattle that they had shot and had been thrown in the grave. 19:01:52… 19:02:17 STETSY: It’s disturbing. It’s disturbing to watch. I was there as we dug them up. It was disturbing to see cattle that we have raised dead for no reason. 19:02:26 (Go to Read More: Fox Nation, then See additional videos at end of video Could this be another Waco in the making? An excuse to exploit a "serious crisis"? --JB)

Obamacare News

Excerpt: Who’s killing whom? Writing in The New York Times the other day, Paul Krugman had this to say: "And while supposed ObamaCare horror stories keep on turning out to be false, it’s already quite easy to find examples of people who died because their states refused to expand Medicaid. According to one recent study, the death toll from Medicaid rejection is likely to run between 7,000 and 17,000 Americans each year." Really? 17,000 deaths per year? This outrageous claim flies in the face of years of careful study by real economists — who have concluded that there is almost no relationship between health insurance and mortality in the general population. As we previously reported: "In independent empirical papers, Richard Kronick and David Card and his colleagues find little evidence that health insurance coverage significantly reduces mortality. Former Director of the Congressional Budget Office June O’Neill and her husband Dave also conclude that lack of insurance has little or no impact on mortality. See the discussion at this blog herehere and here."

Signing Up for ObamaCare Was the Easy Part. By Bernard Goldberg
Excerpt: “I think Democrats should forcefully defend and be proud of the fact … we’re helping because of something we did,” Mr. Obama said. It’s a safe bet that Democrats up for re-election in Red States won’t be taking his advice. But you can’t fault the president for defending his signature piece of legislation. You can fault him, of course, for the way he misled the American people to get ObamaCare passed. But since we’ve been through this before let’s just say his many promises to the American people that ended with the word “period” turned out not to be true. Period!

Excerpt: Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens, though, said premiums have been received for only 107,581 of those policies, which cover 149,465 people. “Many Georgians completed the application process by the deadline, but have yet to pay for the coverage,” Hudgens said in a statement Wednesday.

Obamacare's "Unfolding Fiscal Disaster." By Kevin Glass 
Excerpt: Charles Blahous of economic policy think tank Economics 21 writes about just how large of an impact that its provisions will have on the economy in the future. Spending on Obamacare's coverage expansion is immediately a massive entitlement expansion, and will only get worse. Blahaus contrasts Obamacare with our other major entitlement programs and finds that ACA spends more than all but Medicare, and does so much faster:

The Shocking Secret Behind Obamacare Enrollment Numbers. By Michael F. Cannon
Excerpt: Federal courts may soon rule that President Obama induced the majority of those enrollees to enroll by offering them taxpayer dollars he has no legal authority to spend.
If the courts put a stop to that unauthorized spending, a majority of Exchange enrollees would suddenly face the full cost of Obamacare coverage, and enrollments would plummet. (People keep speculating that the courts are going to stop Obamacare somehow. So far, wishful thinking. ~Bob)

Surprise! Doctors Forced to Rush Patients Through Appointments Thanks to Obamacare. By Katie Pavlich
Excerpt: Because liberals don't seem to understand the concept of supply vs. demand, they failed to recognize early on that an influx of new patients without new doctors would cause a shortage and lessen the quality of care. Well, here we are.

The Democrats' Entitlement Generation: Must we carry our 24-year-old daughter on our health insurance policy?
Excerpt: Do we have to carry our 24-year-old daughter on our health insurance policy? She is employed and has two degrees. We informed her that we would be dropping her at the end of the year because it’s costing us a fortune, and she told us today that we are required by law to cover her. We do not claim her on our taxes. ... It’s your decision whether to keep your daughter on your plan.

APNewsBreak: Medicaid Paid $12M for Illinois Dead
Fair's fair--all voters deserve free health care, right, even the dead ones in Chicago. ~Bob. Excerpt: The Illinois Medicaid program paid an estimated $12 million for medical services for people listed as deceased in other state records, according to an internal state government memo. The memo dated Friday, which The Associated Press obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request, says the state auditor compared clients enrolled in the Medicaid database last June with state death records dating back to 1970. Auditors identified overpayments for services to roughly 2,900 people after the date of their deaths.

Don't Believe the Spin, Obamacare Is Still a Loser. By Scott Rasmussen
Excerpt: The president's triumphal tone suggests that this is self-evidently good news and reason to celebrate the success of his health care law. He says that candidates from his party should be proud of the law and defend it. But that's not likely to happen, and the reasons are deeper than disputes about how many people actually signed up through a health care exchange.
The first is that many people are finding out that the insurance they bought through an exchange doesn't really ensure they'll get medical care.

ObamaCare Will 'Hit the Fan.' From The Patriot Post
Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA) actually voted against ObamaCare in 2010, and now he's warning that the law's delayed provisions mean the health care system's troubles are "going to hit the fan." In fact, he says, "There are parts of ObamaCare, or the Affordable Care Act, that were postponed because they are unpalatable." For example, he points to the tax on so-called "Cadillac" plans that goes into effect in a few years, noting that it will be "the first time in this country's history that we have actually taxed health care." All of it spells disaster for Democrats this fall, he predicts: "We will lose seats in the House. I am fairly certain of that based on the poll numbers that are coming out from the more experienced pollsters down there, and I think we may lose the Senate." Here's hoping he's right.

Massachusetts Democrat: ObamaCare is “going to hit the fan” in the next few years
Excerpt: As badly as President Obama wants everyone to start running with his preferred ObamaCare narrative — i.e., that “this thing is working,” “the repeal debate is and should be over,” and that “Democrats should forcefully defend” the law — but not all Democrats actually need to defend the top-down monstrosity that is now governing our healthcare system. There were a number of Democrats that didn’t join the otherwise overwhelming coalition that voted for the passage of ObamaCare, like Rep. Stephen Lynch in Massachusetts. He sounds pretty skeptical that, had the Obama administration actually allowed the law to go into effect as planned instead of making unilateral delays for the sake of political convenience, Obama would be quite so confident that “this thing is working. (Interesting, a Democrat politician from a state that has the healthcare system that ObamaCare was modeled on comes out with a very direct criticism of the plan. And he notes, as I have often tried to tell people, that the assorted delays that Mr. Obama has made to the "settled law" are there because they are "unpalatable". That means they would have a severe impact that people would notice right away, so they are being delayed until more of the system is in place and it'll be less possible to repeal it and start over. But then dealing with the happens when it "hits the fan" is going to be one enormous mess. Maybe people will figure out then that they were sold a pig in a poke, that we had to pass so we could put it into effect so then we could finally really understand it? Like understanding that the colonoscopy without anesthesia is actually not something we would have signed up for if we knew what it meant? --Del)

Will Obamacare's Losers Outvote its Winners This November? By Byron York
Excerpt: So who has, in fact, been harmed by Obamacare? The first question, of course, is what "harmed" means. But let's define it as anyone who faces higher premiums, or higher deductibles -- adding up to a total higher cost -- and/or a narrower choice of hospitals, doctors and prescription drugs than they had before. For them, health care is a more expensive and troublesome proposition than it was before Obamacare. Everything we know about the system suggests there are millions of Americans in that position, but how many? "There is no hard number," says health care analyst Bob Laszewski. The reasons are as complicated as Obamacare itself.

Krauthammer: Obama's Plan is to Semi-Nationalize Healthcare
Excerpt: "What the real objective of Obamacare is is to sever the relationship that people have now with employer-provided insurance and with their private insurance and also with the small group insurance so everybody ends up in the market, which is essentially controlled by the federal government," Krauthammer opined. "It is a semi-nationalization using the insurers as the middle man. But that’s what it’s about, and that was the objective in the first place, and that’s why all the numbers are obscure, all the numbers are hidden, and why you’ll only get them after we kick and scream and demand them." (Another simple analysis of the situation. But I hope Krauthammer is right, and it will simply expire. The plan is to make it such a huge system that it cannot be allowed to fail, and we have to live with it forever. --Del)

Religion of Peace News

Obama Has No Plan in Afghanistan and the War Against Al Qaeda
Excerpt: The US commander of the ISAF coalition in Afghanistan, General Jospeh Dunford USMC, recently stated: “We are not leaving. We are transitioning – there’s a big difference.” While it is doubtful that the Taliban could parse said difference, the statement has led to comments of Operation Enduring Freedom having led to a defeat. Since the reason we are in Afghanistan is the 9/11 attacks, this is more than a throw away comment. (Obama is going to have us basically "bug out" and leave the Afghans to fend for themselves, and the very sad and disappointing truth is that they are not really ready to do that. The Taliban will come in again, resupplied from Pakistan, and it will get very messy, and in the end, all our blood and treasure may have gone for nothing. And the Afghan women will be in hell again, and all those men who were involved with us in any way will be at terrible risk. Blood will flow in the streets, and it'll be on our heads. Or at least the heads of our "leaders", none of whom will give it a second's thought. --Del)

Police and Boko Haram Massacre Over 150 Dead
Excerpt: The attack began at about 1:30am on Sunday Easter morning and continued till 3pm Sunday Easter afternoon. ... According to the police, the attacks initially was thought to be Fulani herdsmen but as the attacks progressed, it became obvious that the attackers were most likely Boko Haram jihadists. It was confirmed that a church was burnt down during the attack – Christian Church of Nigeria – along with many homes belonging to non-Muslims. Eyewitness account indicates that fifteen corpse were seen littered on the streets – within the line of fire.

Taliban leader among 5 rebels killed in Ghazni mosque explosion
Excerpt: A local Taliban commander was among five militants killed following an explosion inside a mosque in eastern Ghazni province of Afghanistan. Local government officials said the militants were killed while they were making an improvised explosive device (IED) to carry out a roadside bomb explosion.

Excerpt: The people giving the demonstration were trained by the British-based imam Abu Hamza al-Masri. How did Abu Hamza, who as an imam had dedicated his life to understand and teaching Islam properly, come to misunderstand Islam so spectacularly as to think it had to do with slitting the throats of Infidels? Why do the learned analysts never ponder such questions?

Islam’s Religious War with Everyone. By Daniel Greenfield 
Excerpt: Muslim hostility to Christians and Jews is not a phenomenon that began with the modern State of Israel or American foreign policy. Muslims have warred with Christians and Jews as minorities and persecuted them as majorities. Academic apologists claim that Muslim hostility toward Christians derived from an ongoing conflict, but at no time during the history of Islam until the twentieth century did the Jews have a functioning state. Israel has conveniently become the focus and explanation for Muslim hostility toward Jews, but that fails to explain over a thousand years of Muslim hatred and persecution … long before Herzl or the IDF.

Syrian Jihadis ‘Take Aim’ at Christian Toddler. By Raymond Ibrahim 
Excerpt: When it comes to Muslim persecution of Christians, increasingly the past is a blueprint to the present. According to Sham Times and other Arabic websites, jihadi social media networks posted the above picture of a child sitting on the ground while surrounded by armed men pointing their rifles at him. The caption appearing with the picture, purportedly posted by a supporter of the Free Syrian Army, is “Our youngest hostage from among the hostile sects of Kessab.”

Thai police say suspected insurgents kill 3 in shooting in south, including 2-year-old girl
Excerpt: Police Col. Chartchai Chanasit says two gunmen riding on a motorcycle carried out the attack on Sunday in the Bannang Sata district of Yala province.

Islamic school militants ‘confiscated Easter eggs’
Excerpt: A mother of a pupil alleges ­“morality squads” of older boys ­confiscated chocolate and toys from younger children. The woman, who asked not be named for fear of reprisals, told the Daily Express: “Older boys are going round in these morality squads telling off girls if they do not wear veils. “They bully the girls and stop them mingling with boys in the playground.”

Excerpt: Muhammad commanded: “Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him” (Bukhari 9.84.57). This is still the position of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence, both Sunni and Shi’ite. Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the most renowned and prominent Muslim cleric in the world, has stated: “The Muslim jurists are unanimous that apostates must be punished, yet they differ as to determining the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them. The majority of them, including the four main schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi`i, and Hanbali) as well as the other four schools of jurisprudence (the four Shiite schools of Az-Zaidiyyah, Al-Ithna-`ashriyyah, Al-Ja`fariyyah, and Az-Zaheriyyah) agree that apostates must be executed.” There is only disagreement over whether the law applies only to men, or to women also – some authorities hold that apostate women should not be killed, but only imprisoned in their houses until death. This father clearly believes that a female apostate should be killed.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

A few political items. And Happy Easter

A few political items I was able to pull. 

Happy Easter. "He is risen" for my Christian friends. Enjoy the chocolate bunny ears for my secular friends.

Not much on the health front. On the plus side, my breathing has been better and my oxygen use down. On the negative side, Friday morning I blew too hard on the spirometer and turned a backache into a serious muscle spasm, so that the last two days if I use it, or cough, it feels like a hard strike with a ball peen hammer in my right lower back. Stops me from some things I should be doing that make me cough. But it is slowly getting better, it only peripheral to the lung issue and is not life threatening, so I continue to march. ~Bob

Book Recommendation: Ethnic America: A History. By Thomas Sowell
Dr. Sowell looks at the history and integration in to American life of several ethnic groups, such as Jews, Germans, Irish, Mexicans, blacks, etc., as well as the intersection of the cultures they brought with them and the cultures they developed in America. Published in 1981, much of the data has been outdated by demographic and immigration changes, but his insights into these issues are timeless. For example, his research indicate that the eastern European Jews were the most destitute and illiterate of the immigrant groups, and scored low on IQ tests, leading commentators to say that the idea of the Jew as intelligent was a myth. Of course, now they are among the most economically and academically successful of ethnic groups in America, with IQs, college degrees and percentage holding professional jobs far above the national average. Based on contemporary thinking of progressives, this must be because these poor, literate Jews discriminated against native white Christians to get ahead of the rest of us!

The Real History of Slavery. By Thomas Sowell
I found this excellent essay read here on YouTube. ~Bob

Must Read: The Real Pay Gap: In the new economy, just about everyone is worse off. By Stephen Moore
Excerpt: The crisis in America today isn’t about women’s wages; it’s about men’s wages. Men are still the chief breadwinners in most families, and their wages are not moving much at all. If we look at Census Bureau data, we find that while men’s wages have risen by about 6 percent in real terms since 1980, women’s wages have risen by about 60 percent. ... In fact, a 2009 Labor Department study found that, when we control for work experience and education, the gap is only about 5 percent. And when we account for the fact that men are more likely to be injured or suffer an accident on the job, and do riskier work and often more unpleasant jobs than women, the gap virtually disappears. 

Must Read: New Studies Indicate Problems with ObamaCare Enrollment Figures
Excerpt: While President Obama has declared victory, cheering the enrollment of 7.1 million in the health insurance exchanges and announcing that the debate on the repeal of ObamaCare is over, studies from the RAND Corporation and Express Scripts indicate otherwise, says the Fiscal Times. ... A significant portion of the increase in the number of insured actually comes from increased Medicaid enrollment, not an increase in private insurance. Nearly 6 million people enrolled in Medicaid, and most were eligible for Medicaid prior to the health reform law. More than 8 million people enrolled in employer-provided health care. In total, only 3.9 million people actually enrolled in insurance plans through the state or federal exchanges -- not 7.1 million. Express Scripts, a pharmacy benefit manager, found that those enrolling in the exchanges tended to be sicker than previous risk pools. This means that premiums will have to rise even more than was expected. (If you like Obama's statistics, you can keep Obama's statistics. Period. ~Bob)

Good review of the history: Everything you need to know about the long fight between Cliven Bundy and the federal government
Excerpt: The case of cattle rancher Cliven Bundy burst into the national news cycle over the past week, captivating conservative media outlets with its protagonist, a firm believer of states' right with an armed group of supporters backing him. The stand-off between Nevada rancher and federal government officials trying to push cattle off of protected federal land has paused for now, but officials plan to renew their efforts soon. This most-recent skirmish is only the latest in a decades-long fight between the federal government and Cliven Bundy, however. Here's a timeline that proves just how complicated this case is — as well as the power that the media still retains to elevate a local political issue into a national one.

On point: Holy Cow! - Real Lessons Learned in Nevada. By Andy Weddington
Excerpt: Yeah, yeah, yeah - several courts have ruled against Mr. Cliven Bundy (and his grazing cattle). Blah, blah, blah.

Excerpt: As a matter of law, Cliven Bundy is in the wrong. He is nevertheless a sympathetic figure, and the concerns raised by the standoff in Nevada transcend the illegality of his conduct.

Trouble: White House-Touted Health Costs Slowdown 'Could be Over. ' By Guy Benson
Excerpt: The notion that Obamacare is bending downward the so-called "cost curve" on national health spending has been debunked by the government's own numbers. At late 2013 estimate from CMS projected that aggregate healthcare-related expenses would climb by 6.1 percent this year, as opposed to 4.5 percent in the absence of the new law. (Just another Obama promise that came with an expiration date. What difference does it make? He can lie, the media covers, we get enraged, and most people don't care. Yet. ~Bob)

49 percent think White House had IRS target conservatives. By Dana Blanton
Excerpt: Nearly half of American voters think the IRS targeted conservative groups at the request of the White House, and most want Congress to keep investigating the matter. The latest Fox News poll also finds 69 percent don’t feel President Obama has followed through on his vow to “find out exactly what happened on this.” (The other 51% were too busy talking on their free Obama-Phones to respond. ~Bob)

Excerpt: A plan to honor a Harlem cop killed by Nation of Islam radicals is drowning under a flood of racial tensions created more than four decades ago, but no one wants to throw it a lifeline — not even the NYPD’s new top cop. Police Commissioner Bill Bratton is distancing himself from the controversial push to get the street in front of the 28th Precinct renamed in honor of Officer Phillip Cardillo, who was shot and killed inside a mosque run by Louis Farrakhan in 1972 — noting that the community should make the final decision. (Well of course you can't honor a cop murdered by Muslim extremists if it would offend Muslims. I love the charge of racism--Islam is the only race you can join by making the statement of faith. ~Bob)

An Inconvenient Rancher: BLM Docs Show Feds’ Solar Plan Targets Bundy for Elimination
Excerpt: Once upon a time there were more than fifty cattle ranches operating in the area of Southern Nevada where Cliven Bundy, with the help of numerous armed patriots from all over, is making his stand against the abusive, bankrupting tactics of the bullying federal government. Now, there is only one rancher and his family left. (And Harry Reid salutes him and the rest of us. --JB).

Jews ordered to register in east Ukraine
Excerpt: Jews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to "register" with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia, according to Ukrainian and Israeli media.
Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city's Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee "or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated," reported Ynet News, Israel's largest news website.

Obama Takes Bold Step to Geoengineer Climate Change
Excerpt: A heavily redacted copy of a classified report titled "America Cools Down on Climate" (ACDC) and obtained by TheGreenGrok outlines the audacious plan to use commercial air traffic to mitigate the growing impacts of climate change across the United States. The plan falls under the category of what is known as geoengineering: the attempt by humans to slow, stop, or even reverse global warming by manipulating the environment instead of aiming to slow greenhouse gas emissions themselves. Geoengineering examples include injecting particles into the stratosphere to reflect sunlight back into space and dumping iron into the ocean to enhance the uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide by oceanic phytoplankton. The ACDC plan, code-named "Rainmaker," is considered by experts to be groundbreaking not only because it did not require the construction of a vast industrial infrastructure; it also helped keep flights on time. (Continuing to follow pattern; makes "announcement" of "executive order" after a fait accompli. Been doing this for some time covertly. "Father knows best"....population and citizens' input not desired or needed. --Barb)

Excerpt: According to the Government Accountability Office, the federal government spends $18 billion a year on 47 duplicative job training programs across nine federal agencies. But the White House isn’t just adding to this host of repetitive rackets – it’s effectively creating a new program that will duplicate other programs already put in place at the state level. (Actually, these programs create lots of jobs--for bureaucrats to run them who are loyal Democrat party votes. ~Bob)

Obama, Michigan in talks to free up $100M to aid Detroit pension deal
Excerpt: The two sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren�t authorized to disclose the information, confirmed that there have been talks about the federal government supporting a move by the state to give Detroit $100 million in federal money for blight remediation. That, in turn, would free up $100 million of the more than $500 million that emergency manager Kevyn Orr planned to spend for blight removal over the next 10 years. Orr could then use that money to reduce pension cuts. (You did know the Detroit Democrat Disaster was going to come out of your pocket, right? It always does. ~Bob)

The True Opponents of Immigration Reform: Too many special interests profit from the present mess. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: The problem instead is that the establishments of both parties talk in high-minded fashion but in fact act selfishly. Unfortunately, identity-politics elites and Democratic-party activists, along with employers of undocumented workers, do not support such a grand bargain. Why not? Because Democrats and the members of the identity-politics industry believe that they have gained millions of new constituents. The more slowly huge surges of undocumented immigrants assimilate, the more they are likely to remain bloc constituents for particular causes and politics.

Does Tax Refund Fraud Benefit Democrats? By Ian Smith 
Excerpt: That the Democrats in government gain from keeping the tax credit system as dysfunctional as possible is probably a good guess why. ... The Earned Income Tax Credit alone costs taxpayers a whopping $12-14 billion in fraudulent payments every year. This is especially troubling considering the program pays out in total $56 billion per year, meaning its average “improper payments rate” is around 25 per cent. Medicaid fraud, which is very well publicized and has its own federal task force, hovers at around 8-10 per cent a year.

Husband Convicted in Case Touted as Hate Crime
Excerpt: A murder case once touted as a hate crime, and a Muslim Trayvon Martin, ended with dramatic courtroom outbursts in El Cajon, Cal. late Thursday. The victim's husband, Kassim Alhimidi, was convicted of bludgeoning his wife Shaima Alawadi to death inside their home. Alhimidi, who wept loudly throughout his trial, spoke loudly in Arabic after wagging his finger at the jury, the San Diego Union Tribune reports.

Muslim drivers at Cleveland airport refuse to drive cabs with Gay Games advertising
Excerpt: Roughly 25 Muslim drivers dispatched to Cleveland Hopkins International Airport are refusing to drive cabs adorned with advertising for the region’s upcoming Gay Games, citing religious reasons.

Shock Poll! Majority of Americans Say President Obama is a Liar 
Excerpt: According to a recent poll done by Fox News, the majority of Americans believe that President Obama is usually lying. Sixty-one percent of the people who took the poll believe that President Obama is lying at least some of the time on important issues. An additional twenty percent say that the President lies “here and there.” That means that eighty-one percent of Americans believe that Barack Obama lies to us. (Yeah, yeah some of you will poo-poo the poll simply because it was done by Fox News, but don't be afraid. --JB)

The Middle East War on Christians: Muslim-majority nations are doing to followers of Jesus what they did to the Jews. By Ron Prosor   
Excerpt: The Middle East may be the birthplace of three monotheistic religions, but some Arab nations appear bent on making it the burial ground for one of them. For 2,000 years, Christian communities dotted the region, enriching the Arab world with literature, culture and commerce. At the turn of the 20th century, Christians made up 26% of the Middle East's population. Today, that figure has dwindled to less than 10%. Intolerant and extremist governments are driving away the Christian communities that have lived in the Middle East since their faith was born. (The time of persecution of Christians is not over, not by a long shot, and the really tragic thing about it is that these Christian communities have been in place for over 1000 years, much longer in some places. And now, in the 21st century, the rise of Islamic orthodoxy and extremism has yanked the rug of stability out from under their feet, and they are targets every day for various forms of harassment and persecution. The slaughter of Christians in Darfur has gone on now for over a decade, and the UN troops there can't seem to do a whole lot to stop it. There are times when I think that we should have money being raised in Christian churches all over this country to go to organizations that smuggle weapons and supplies to Christian communities in these countries, to help them defend themselves. The Irish in this country many years ago raised money to send weapons to the IRA, is it time to follow that example and send weapons to these suffering Christians? Or is it time for our government to bring down whatever sanctions it can on their governments for their gross violations of human rights? In theory the wonderful UN is supposed to be the worldwide organization that moves to protest human rights violations, but the only real action we see there are the eternally repeated condemnations of Israel. (The one place in the Middle East right now where the Christian population is growing.) All the propaganda about the "religion of peace" is nice, and there certainly are Muslims who are perfectly fine living with people of other faiths, but the truth is that the last 20 years of growing Islamic extremism has gone more than far enough to make it a very serious problem in several Islamic states. It is not "Islamophobic" to recognize what is going on, any more than it was "Deutschophobic" to see that the rise of Naziism in Germany was a very bad thing. We need to get off the PC parade of people wearing blinders and recognize the reality of religious extremism in certain parts of the Middle East. --Del. We should allow the Saudis to build a mosque here for every church they allow here. ~Bob)

Bankrupt Illinois Madness Never Stops; House Committee Wants Taxpayers to Spend $100 Million on Barack Obama Library. By Mike Shedlock 
Excerpt: Illinois is broke. Its public pension plans are the most troubled in the nation. Illinois passed massive "temporary" tax hikes to fix the pension problem, but that did not make a dent in the problem. Nonetheless, ideas to waste more taxpayer money are always on the table. Here's a recent example. $100 Million for Barack Obama Library. (So glad to not live there any longer. ~Bob)

Nigeria's Boko Haram Islamic extremists claim massive blast that killed 75 in Nigerian capital
Excerpt: Islamic extremists Saturday claimed responsibility for the massive rush-hour explosion earlier this week that ripped through a busy bus station in Nigeria's capital, Abuja, killing at least 75 people and wounding 141. "We are in your city, but you don't know where we are," Abubakar Shekau, leader of the Boko Haram terrorist network, says in a new video that threatens more attacks. (“We are in your city, but you don’t know where we are.” That is true of many more cities besides just Abuja. But to pay too much attention to such matters would be “Islamophobic,” and neither government and law enforcement authorities nor the general public have yet caught on to the fact that every resistance to jihad terror and Islamic supremacism is ipso facto “Islamophobic,” and the whole point of charging “Islamophobia” is to clear away all obstacles to the advance of jihad terror. --Robert Spencer, JihadWatch.com. Worth subscribing to their free e-news daily digest. ~Bob)

UK: State schools isolate non-Muslims
Excerpt: Schools in Birmingham are illegally segregating pupils, discriminating against non-Muslim students and restricting the GCSE syllabus to “comply with conservative Islamic teaching”, an official report leaked to The Telegraph discloses. Department for Education inspectors said that girls in a school at the centre of the so-called “Trojan Horse” plot were forced to sit at the back of the class, some Christian pupils were left to “teach themselves” and an extremist preacher was invited to speak to children.

Catholic priest is killed in Central African Republic (and his body mutilated)
Excerpt: A Catholic priest, Father Labbe Christ Formane Willbona, was murdered in the north of the Central African Republic, allegedly by a group of armed shepherds of the Fulani ethnic group, considered to be close to the former rebel group of the Seleka. 

Progressive Insurance: The right ideological credentials mean never having to say you’re sorry. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: How do you ensure that you won’t be ostracized, denounced, or fired if you are a media celebrity, captain of industry, or high public official? For some, sexist banter is certainly no problem. Stand-up comedian Bill Maher called Sarah Palin a c–t and a tw-t, but suffered no ill consequences. David Letterman joked on air that Sarah Palin’s 14-year-old daughter had had sex with Alex Rodriguez during a New York Yankees game. There was no downside to that either. President Obama tosses around “sweetie” as he wishes. No problem with that. No one believes Barack could be condescending to women.

Corn biofuels worse than gasoline on global warming in short term – study

Excerpt: Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a new study shows, challenging the Obama administration's conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change. A $500,000 study – paid for by the federal government and released Sunday in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Climate Change – concludes that biofuels made with corn residue release 7% more greenhouse gases in the early years compared with conventional gasoline. (When the free market is trashed and the regime is pushing a command economy—they dictate what goes where and for how much—expect gas over $5.00 a gallon (4.17 for premium today) and no feed allotted to cattle; more corn being ordered to be used for ethanol by regime. Even though it is going to starve the population and has been shown to damage engines and the air. --Barb)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

WWII vs. A Website

Click on picture to enlarge.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A few political things slipped in

Blog postings will be very limited due to the on-going challenges from my lung transplant, which is not doing well. So I have to delete 90% of incoming non-personal email unread, due to time and energy. But a few things caught my eye.

I remind everyone I don't have time for Facebook or Linked-In, so poking, tagging and posting there doesn't get anything to me.

Say, no time like the present to support charity and get copies of my books:
They say these things go up in value after the author is gone. They might get to be worth the paper they are printed on. ~Bob

Book Recommendation: Dark Invasion: 1915: Germany's Secret War and the Hunt for the First Terrorist Cell in America by Howard Blum 
this interesting history was a birthday gift from my brother, Tom. Except for the Zimmerman Telegram, I knew almost nothing about Germany's sabotage campaign against a "neutral" United States in WWI. It included many ship and ammo plant bombings and a couple of attempts at germ warfare--which killed some people. Well written and well researched, this one is for the history buff.

Nevada Cattle Rancher Wins ‘Range War’ With Feds. By Nick Sorrentino
Excerpt: This is the power of social media. This is the power of personal video cameras. This is the power of citizen journalists. And the next time Senator Feinstein calls for “licencing” only “legitimate journalists,” that the 1st Amendment only extends to people who work at the New York Times, Washington Post, or MSNBC, remember this moment. This is how the bullies with the power, the cronies and their allies, are turned back. (I wouldn't say this is over. When you cross the Big Government, you and your kids can end up dead. See Wako and Ruby Ridge. Big Government liberals automatically see the government as right. There are arguments, especially that Bundy doesn't own that land. If his claim predates the Federal Government, then the Indians' claim predates his. Limited Government conservatives, like me are likely to come down on the ranchers' side. There are arguments. The government's "protect the turtles" argument stinks when Senator Reid-connected lobbyists want the land for a solar project, which is no better for the turtles than, say cattle grazing or Reid's home, which is reportedly in tortoise [yes, I know the difference] land. ~Bob)

I recommend everyone go to NCPA.org and subscribe both to Dr. Goodman's free blog and their free daily policy digest. Thy do good work and deserve your support. ~Bob. Excerpt: Have you ever wondered why poor people are poor? It’s not as though there aren’t plenty of role models around. Millions of people live highly successful, productive lives in this country. So why don’t people at the bottom of the income ladder copy the behavior of those several rungs above them and better their lot in life? If this question doesn’t really interest you, that’s understandable. What’s not understandable is why it is not an interesting question for those who regard inequality of income the burning issue of the day. For example, when is the last time you saw a Paul Krugman column on why poor people are poor? When Krugman writes about poverty, he can’t get more than a few sentences into the piece without launching into an attack on Republicans for being racists and indifferent to the plight of the poor. And that’s on a good day. When he’s in a bad mood, he depicts Republicans as actually delighting in the suffering of the poor. What motivates Krugman more: Concern for the poor? Or hatred of Republicans? You decide.

BREAKING: Emails Show Lois Lerner Fed True the Vote Tax Information to Democrat Elijah Cummings. By Katie Pavlich
Excerpt: New IRS emails released by the House Oversight Committee show staff working for Democratic Ranking Member Elijah Cummings communicated with the IRS multiple times between 2012 and 2013 about voter fraud prevention group True the Vote. True the Vote was targeted by the IRS after applying for tax exempt status more than two years ago. Further, information shows the IRS and Cummings' staff asked for nearly identical information from True the Vote President Catherine Engelbrecht about her organization, indicating coordination and improper sharing of confidential taxpayer information.

Worth Reading: Statistical Frauds of the Left: Liberals’ “war on women” consists of talking points to excite the gullible. By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: It is a statistical fraud when Barack Obama and other politicians say that women earn only 77 percent of what men earn — and that this is because of discrimination. It would certainly be discrimination if women were doing the same work as men, for the same number of hours, with the same amount of training and experience, as well as other things being the same. But study after study, over the past several decades, has shown repeatedly that those things are not the same.

The "77 Cents on the Dollar" Myth
Excerpt: It is a myth that a woman makes 77 cents on every dollar earned by a man, say Andrew Biggs and Mark Perry of the American Enterprise Institute. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, "Highlights of Women's Earnings in 2012," full-time wage and salaried female workers had median weekly earnings of $691, compared to male median earnings of $854 (an 81 percent gap). That might seem to support the 77-cents-on-the-dollar claim, until you look at what else BLS said. While this was a comparison of "full-time" workers, what actually qualifies as "full-time" varies within that designation. Men were nearly twice as likely to work more than 40 hours a week than women were, and women were almost twice as likely to work only 35 to 39 hours per week. Taking that into account shrinks the pay gap -- women working 40-hour weeks earned 88 percent of male earnings.

War on Women: DSCC Pays Women $.70 per $1.00 for Men. By Heather Ginsberg 
Excerpt: The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) has been working to make the midterm election season a nightmare for Republicans across the country by blaming them for inequalities in pay between men and women. Many know the commonly touted statistic that women earn 77 cents on every dollar men make. Well according to a new analysis of salary information from the DSCC, the group only pays women 70 cents for every dollar men make.

3 myths on our natural gas boom: The reality is that the new energy explosion helps us all. By Mark P. Mills
Excerpt: For all the coverage America's energy boom has gotten, there are still a lot of common assumptions about the oil and natural gas business that are flat out wrong. We know the good news: Oil and gas production is rising so fast that U.S. dependence on imports will soon disappear. Growth in natural gas has made America the world's largest producer and could soon make us a huge exporter. In the past half-dozen years, America's hydrocarbon juggernaut has boosted our economy by hundreds of billions of dollars. To keep the boom going, the federal government needs to keep out of the way, even as pressure grows to tighten energy-industry regulation. That's why it is important to unbundle three myths about the boom:

American Birthright
Excerpt:  I will not be forced into silence while freedom slips away. If you are a member of America’s conglomeration of identity-Nazis who believe anyone who thinks differently from you must be destroyed, please take notice. In the same way you are acting, the historical Nazis began their reign of terror. This is a battle for my birthright. I am an American. I will win this fight. You have had your say, shown your true colors too often. Sadly, it is your cause, whatever it might be, that loses. It is the leadership you follow that has lost it for you.

Excerpt: Eich broke the rules of the game. Suddenly everything appears in another light. Just days after being named CEO of Mozilla, Brendan Eich was forced out because he is an opponent of same-sex marriage. After declining opportunities to recant his views, he “voluntarily” decided to step down. Responses have been all over the map. (I don't have a problem with gay marriage. The threat to America in marriage is not gays getting married, it is straights having kids and not getting married, contributing to poverty, ct\rime, welfare spending and drugs. But i have a problem with people trying to bully others out of speaking their views. At the time he contributed, a guy named Obama had the same views. Should the left force Obama out of his job? ~Bob)

Advocate for "Women in Tech" Accused of Raping His Wife. By Daniel Greenfield
Excerpt: Dana Contreras, a man, married his wife Melissa in 2007. Then he had surgery to mutilate himself so that he could pretend to be a woman. Then despite not going to college, got a top job at Twitter where he became an advocate for transgender issues, but then things didn’t go so well.

Excerpt: There’s a great tradition of Socialists doing and saying different things. Especially the wealthy Medea Benjamin kind. While Medea Benjamin pushes BDS on her Facebook page, her investment page looks rather different.

The Joy of Thinking: Shmuel Trigano. By Nidra Poller
Excerpt: Thirty-seven years later, Shmuel Trigano finds himself once more in a linguistic-cultural-geographic conundrum. The French language, which has lost nothing of its vibrant beauty and capacity for expression, is losing its territorial scope. And Jews in France are tottering on the edge of a familiar precipice. The same Muslim population that forced them to flee Arab lands has now created such a hostile environment in France that many envisage another exodus. The French language once practiced by fine minds all over the world is becoming a backwater, a trap for thinkers whose work is not easily translated and marketable. We who are enduring this difficult period in contemporary French history have the privilege of reading their works in the original; it isn’t a golden age, but there’s some silver in it.6

Anti-Immigration Euro-Skeptic Parties May Be On the Rise: Geert Wilders Once Again Endures a Firestorm of Criticism. By Jerry Gordon
Excerpt: The leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party, Nigel Farage, given current trending opinion polls, may be poised to surpass the Labor party. It alleged in a UK Telegraph report that Lady Thatcher’s unofficial biographer considers Farage’s immigration and EU stands “closely aligned” with her views. A decade ago this writer was on a weekly international Radio America panel with Farage where as the lone UKIP Member of the European Parliament he boosted these views. These opinion polls prior to the May European Parliamentary  elections reflect the ascendency of the anti-immigration Euro skeptic parties in many EU countries. 

Excerpt: Today I’m going to get personal. The reason? To see if readers have had similar experiences. There were about 450 students in my high school graduating class. I don’t remember a single one I would call “poor.” Only one would I call “rich.” All the rest were squarely within the 20 yard lines. Socioeconomically, we were all very much alike: solidly middle class. We went to school together, played sports together and socialized with each other. Since my school was segregated by law at the time, all of the students were white. Now let’s run the tape forward and approach the time of normal retirement. At this point I made five observations.  First, I made a rough calculation that between 5% and 10% of our class was earning about half the class income. Obviously, my calculation was far from precise, but I believe that the inequality of income within my high school class was similar to the inequality we observe in society as a whole. Second, I have no idea why this happened. The highest earners in my class were not necessarily the ones with the highest grades or test scores.

Excerpt: Paul Krugman has written another one of those columns where almost every single sentence is wrong. But he did get one thing right: The crucial thing to understand about the Affordable Care Act is that it’s a Rube Goldberg device, a complicated way to do something inherently simple. The biggest risk to reform has always been that the scheme would founder on its complexity. Have you ever wondered why ObamaCare is burdened with so much complexity? Here’s the answer: Barack Obama. Obama? Yes, the president himself. He campaigned on the promise that he would put partisanship aside and unite the country behind sensible answers to pressing problems. Then he didn’t.

The Democrats’ Fixation On ‘Disparate Impact’ Denigrates Minorities: No such thing as "race neutral" outcomes. By John Rosenberg  
Excerpt: The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights has had a busy week or two trying to stamp out equal treatment of minorities. First, the Miami Herald reports, it “has quietly revived an investigation of Florida’s Bright Futures scholarships,” which are awarded in part on the basis of SAT or ACT scores. Inside Higher Ed points out that critics of Bright Futures, and all programs that rely on similar tests, regard those tests as discriminatory because “on average, black and Latino students’ scores lag behind those of whites and Asians students.” State Rep. Erik Fresen, the Miami Republican who chairs the Florida House education subcommittee on appropriations, replies to charges of bias by insisting that “Bright Futures, from its inception, has always been race, gender and creed blind…. [T[he program is unbiased and based only on the merit of individual students.” That, of course, is precisely why the Obama administration, which regards  color- and gender-blindness as simply Jim Crow dressed up in modern garb, objects to Bright Futures. An Office for Civil Rights spokesman stated in an email to the Miami Herald that OCR was “investigating allegations that the state of Florida utilizes criteria for determining eligibility for college scholarships that have the effect of discriminating against Latino and African-American students on the basis of national origin and race.” ... Apparently the Obama administration regards “diversity” as compelling for colleges, but not academic merit. (We keep seeing this again and again.  If the statistics on some minority don't match up- that is, their percentage in the population and their percentage in either something good (graduating college) or something not so good (expulsion from school) are not the same number, or very close- then that is prima facie evidence that there has been discrimination against them.  In other words, it must be impossible that the actions of individuals in the minority could be different from the actions of everyone else. That such an idea runs totally against the common experience of diverse groups of humans just doesn't get acknowledged.  Jews make up maybe 3% of the population, but are a much higher proportion of doctors and lawyers.  Blacks make up 13% of the population, but are a much higher proportion of professional athletes in basketball and football.  Women are half the population, but make up 75% of veterinarians and only 15% of mechanical engineers. There is no way to force-fit people into equal boxes in any system, and trying to do so just makes one hell of a mess.  The Dept of Education is one of the federal agencies whose existence I have to wonder about; that is, do we really need this bureaucracy at all, can we demonstrate that its activities really serve society well?  Right now it looks more like they are going to bring more damage to the system, that will serve no one well in the end. --Del)

The Racist, Discriminating Democratic Party. By  Ronn Torossian 
Excerpt: The Democratic Party, the party of slavery, which openly practices the only form of discrimination that is acceptable today in American politics – class warfare – and discrimination against the successful, yesterday, for the third time in recent weeks, wrongly accused the Republican Party of racism. (Actually, the democrats also support race-based discrimination, as long as they can appeal to interest groups on the basis of diversity, in affirmative action, or against Asians at the universities. ~Bob)

America’s New Anti-Strategy : Our allies and our enemies have seriously recalculated where the U.S. stands. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: It was not difficult to define American geopolitical strategy over the seven decades following World War II — at least until 2009. It was largely bipartisan advocacy, most ambitiously, for nations to have the freedom of adopting constitutional governments that respected human rights, favored free markets, and abided by the rule of law. And at the least, we sought a world in which states could have any odious ideology they wished as long as they kept it within their own borders. There were several general strategic goals as we calculated our specific aims, both utopian and realistic.

Roland Martin: Attacks on Black Conservatives Too Personal. By Aaron Stern
Ecerpt: When Ben Carson, a neurosurgeon turned conservative pundit, compared the United States to Nazi Germany last month, he was quickly criticized in mainstream and liberal media outlets, including by the Daily Beast's Joshua DuBois, who wrote that Carson was no longer a role model for black children because he "sold out to the right." Carson gets plenty of attacks like that whenever he speaks out against liberal causes, but he rarely gets public support from groups like the NAACP. (Whites who criticize Mr. Obama are racists, and Blacks who do so are of course "Uncle Toms", or Oreos, or sell-outs.  These are the standard attacks made to suppress criticism, and the mere facts and logic just don't matter.  While not every criticism of Mr. Obama or Democrat policies is fair or accurate, no one and no Party can be above all criticism, and personal attacks on individuals who levy criticisms is inappropriate. --Del)

A Halo for Selfishness. By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: The recent Supreme Court decision over-ruling some Federal Election Commission restrictions on political campaign contributions has provoked angry reactions on the left. That is what often happens whenever the High Court rules that the First Amendment means what it says -- free speech for everybody. When the Supreme Court declared in 2010 that both unions and corporations had a right to buy political ads, that was considered outrageous by the left. President Obama called the decision "devastating" and said it "will open the floodgates for special interests."

Excerpt: Attorney General Eric Holder must be suffering from a sort of amnesia. He is upset at supposed divisiveness and rudeness directed at him when testifying before Congress, and suggests not too subtly that he and President Obama have been accorded inordinately harsh treatment (fill in the blanks why). Aside from the fact that he seemed to have relished the combat with Representative Gohmert in quite unprofessional tones (“you don’t want to go there, buddy, alright?”/ “good luck with your asparagus”), he seems to forget what former attorney general Alberto Gonzales once endured both in the liberal media and before Democrats in Congress, not to mention the films, comic routines, novels, and op-eds that focused on the idea of assassinating President George W. Bush, a shameful chapter in our history, which I think Eric Holder was largely mum about at the time.

Dude! Casual marijuana use linked with brain abnormalities, study finds
Excerpt: Casual marijuana use may come with some not-so-casual side effects. For the first time ever, researchers at Northwestern University have analyzed the relationship between casual use of marijuana and brain changes – and found that young adults who used cannabis just once or twice a week showed significant abnormalities in two important brain structures. The study’s findings, to be published Wednesday in the Journal of Neuroscience, are similar to those of past research linking chronic, long-term marijuana use with mental illness and changes in brain development. 

Worth Reading: The Boston bombing and the ‘Islamophobia’ scam. By Robert Spencer
Excerpt: When Islamic jihadists set off two bombs last year at the Boston Marathon, murdering three people and wounded 260, maiming some for life, they brought to fruition not only their own plot, but the whole enterprise of making Americans think that there is a big problem of “Islamophobia” in this country. As this grim anniversary of the April 15, 2013 bombings approaches, it is useful to recall what the ongoing drumbeat over “Islamophobia” is really all about: enabling Islamic jihad murder.

More than 100 schoolgirls kidnapped by Islamic terror group Boko Haram
Excerpt: Heavily armed men have kidnapped more than 100 girls from a secondary school in northeast Nigeria’s Borno state and torched the surrounding town, a day after a deadly bombing in the African state’s capital. (Well, the Holy Qur'an permits sex with slave girls. It's their culture--don't be Islamophobic. ~Bob)

Worth Reading: Equality in Discipline. By Walter E. Williams
Excerpt: George Leef, director of research for the North Carolina-based John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, authored a Forbes op-ed article titled "Obama Administration Takes Groupthink To Absurd Lengths." The subtitle is "School Discipline Rates Must Be 'Proportionate.'" (http://tinyurl.com/mxnlg9h). Let's examine some of the absurdity of the Obama administration's take on student discipline.

Worth Reading: More Puzzling Obamacare Numbers. By Megan McArdle
Excerpt: I mean, I could tell a story about how the exchanges make a trivial contribution to solving the problem of the uninsured, but a lot of uninsured people who are afraid of the individual mandate bite the bullet and sign up for that employer-sponsored insurance they’ve been declining because their share of the premium is $150 a month. Where the existence of the exchanges causes a lot of companies to dump their retirees onto the individual market in order to pick up some subsidies. Where people who already had individual policies take one look at the new premiums they have to pay and decide it’s better to just sign up for their spouse’s insurance, even if they have to pay the whole premium for the additional coverage. It’s not a particularly flattering story for Obamacare, but it’s a story you can string together from these data.

Excerpt: Media outlets in Australia and New Zealand today reported that two Australian nationals, including one who was a New Zealand citizen as well, were killed in a US predator drone strike in Yemen on Nov. 19. Last year's airstrike took place in Yemen's eastern Hadramout province, a known jihadist haven, and targeted al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) fighters driving in the Ghayl Bawazir area near Mukallah, the provincial capital.