Saturday, August 29, 2009

Political Digest August 29 2009

Police: Sex offender kept victim, kids in shed
Excerpt: PLACERVILLE, Calif. — A woman who was snatched from a bus stop as an 11-year-old child in 1991 turned up Thursday after being held for the past 18 years in isolation in a backyard compound by a convicted sex offender who fathered two children with her, police said. The details about her time in captivity emerged after Jaycee Lee Dugard surfaced at a police station in Northern California, nearly two decades after she vanished outside her home. Police said Phillip Garrido, 58, held her the entire time as a virtual slave, sheltered from the outside world in tents, sheds and outbuildings in his backyard in suburban Antioch. "None of the children have ever been to school, they've never been to a doctor," El Dorado County Undersheriff Fred Kollar said. "They were kept in complete isolation in this compound, if you will." There was electricity from electrical cords, rudimentary outhouse, rudimentary shower, "as if you were camping," he said. Prison officials said Garrido admitted the kidnapping after meeting with his parole officer. He brought Dugard and the two children, ages 11 and 15, to the meeting. (Given the opportunity, I would shoot him dead. If that makes me a bad person, so be it.)

Holder's Decision To Probe CIA Hints At a New Dynamic
Excerpt: Holder notified the White House that he was reluctantly leaning toward naming a prosecutor to review whether laws had been broken during interrogations -- the very thing Obama had said he wanted to avoid. And the word Holder got back, according to people familiar with the conversations, was that the decision was up to him. The back story to Monday's appointment of a career prosecutor to review CIA interrogation methods illustrates Holder's influence in the new administration and sheds light on the emerging and delicate relationship between the White House and the Justice Department. In this and other big battles, including the decision to release memos this year by Bush administration officials giving the green light to harsh interrogation tactics, Holder and his Justice Department have prevailed over strong objections from the CIA and the intelligence community. Holder hasn't won every one of those battles, but he has won many. (If the jihadists hit DC hard, I hope Holder survives to walk through the carnage. This is the guy who helped Clinton pardon Marc Rich.

The lion of the left
Excerpt: Who can forget Kennedy's outrageous 2006 inquisition into the integrity of then Supreme Court nominee Samuel Alito? In 1987 when Ronald Reagan nominated Alito to be a U.S. District Attorney, Kennedy's vote was among the Senate's unanimous consent. And when Sam Alito was nominated for the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in 1990, he again received Kennedy's vote and unanimous consent from the Senate. But after impugning Alito's character in his Supreme Court hearings, Kennedy blustered, "If confirmed, Alito could very well fundamentally alter the balance of the court and push it dangerously to the right." Of course, Kennedy was an expert at "borking" judicial nominees. Indeed, he is responsible for the coining of the term. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan nominated an exceptional jurist, Robert Bork, to the Supreme Court. During Bork's confirmation hearings, Kennedy proclaimed, "Robert Bork's America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens' doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of the Government, and the doors of the Federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens." Despicable. (This article brings some balance to the drive for sainthood underway, but is mostly negative.)

IRS could cut limits on 401(k) allocations
The good news just keeps rollin’ in.

Transparency, Science and the EPA Revisited,0,901567.story
Excerpt: The agency used secondary scientific sources, studies that largely weren't adequately peer-reviewed and the selective use of scientific studies to justify a policy decision they wanted to make. And in terms of trials based on myth, exactly the opposite -- we don't want decades of publicly accessible evidence to be ignored. To enact effective policy we need transparency and scientific data which is beyond question, not data deemed beyond questioning, concludes Peck.

Rangel, Again
Excerpt: Yes, the House -- which is controlled by fellow Democrats -- has begun investigations. But so far it's failed to act. And there's scant reason to think it ever will. Dems may rather tolerate such sleaze than take on the Ways and Means Committee chairman, but they do so only by smearing their own reputations. But this shouldn't stop law-enforcement officials from launching their own probe. Rangel's lengthy, inexplicable "oversights" demand immediate action. (When a Black President and Black AG ignore wrong doing by blacks, like this of the thugs blocking voting places in Phila, it feeds racism.)

Obamacare: The Only Exit Strategy
Truly scary.

This Point Cuts Both Ways
Excerpt: Forget death panels. If you're really interested in putting a stop to the public option (and some truly entertaining town hall meetings), let's talk circumcision panels…. Now people at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (those folks who often carry themselves as if they, too, had the ear of the Lord) are mulling a national campaign to promote "universal circumcision" for all boys in the United States in an effort to reduce the spread of HIV. Additionally, as The New York Times reported this week, the CDC is thinking about expanding the campaign to target promiscuous adult heterosexual men.

Waxman Takes on Drug Makers Over Medicare
Excerpt: Drug makers contend they have already worked out a 10-year, $80 billion cost-savings deal with the White House and crucial Senate gatekeepers on the trillion-dollar health care overhaul. The industry says that trying to add Mr. Waxman’s provision could scuttle that agreement. “You not only break the deal, but you break the bank for us,” said Billy Tauzin, chief executive of the drug industry’s trade group, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, known as PhRMA.

Mali: Women's rights bill blocked; Muslim leaders called it "the work of the devil" Why? Well, for example, "under the new law women are no longer required to obey their husbands, instead husbands and wives owe each other loyalty and protection." Oh, and a minimum age of 18 for marriage, which would contradict Muhammad's example -- a "beautiful pattern of conduct," per Qur'an 33:21.

Stop 'emotionalizing' the cap-and-trade debate
Excerpt: Environmental activists who favor anti-global warming regulations like the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill now before the U.S. Senate have long claimed that government intervention is essential to save the planet from an imminent man-made catastrophe. In fact, only Waxman-Markey threatens to be a man-made catastrophe. The bill would create billions of dollars' worth of government credits to businesses that reduce carbon emissions. Businesses that exceed the required reductions could sell the credits to firms that fail to do so. The approach won't work because it would use a government mandate to create a market for which there is no consumer demand. Since the American economy is mainly powered by energy produced from carbon fuels and will be for the foreseeable future, reducing carbon emissions requires slowing or eliminating economic growth, with the result that 2 million more Americans will become unemployed by 2012, according to an analysis by the conservative Heritage Foundation. Similarly, the Brookings Institution -- certainly no sentinel of rightward analysis -- also predicts dire economic results from Waxman-Markey.

Climate Change This Week: The Rich Must Pay
Under the guise of improving the world, underneath all the spin, "progressives" usually want to tear something down so they can remake the world in their image. How refreshing it is on the rare occasions they actually admit this -- at least then we know what we're dealing with. In a recent interview with the BBC, Greenpeace leader Gerd Leipold admitted that a goal of the envirofacists is to destroy the rich. "The lifestyle of the rich in the world," Leipold said, "is not a sustainable model." By extension, neither is the U.S. -- the richest country in the world. Leipold and his drones are calling for the suppression of economic growth in America in order to stop climate change. Obama's got his back. But even halting our growth is not good enough. African leaders are also calling for rich countries to hand over $67 billion dollars a year to offset the effects of global warming on that continent. And the creative ideas keep coming. Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, citing pollution in the Northwestern hemisphere, is calling for compensation for the famines in his country during the 1980s -- apparently he has found scientists to blame us for that, too. The Patriot Post

On a tiny strip of land narrower at its narrowest point than many American townships,
Israel has built a modern economy with a GDP per capita just shy of $30,000 – and within striking distance of the European Union average. If you object that that's because it's uniquely blessed by Uncle Sam, well, for the past 30 years the second largest recipient of U.S. aid has been Egypt: Their GDP per capita is $5,000, and America has nothing to show for its investment other than one-time pilot Mohammed Atta coming at you through the office window.-- Mark Steyn

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