Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Political Digest September 30, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

The Brainy Bunch by Dr. Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: There is usually only a limited amount of damage that can be done by dull or stupid people. For creating a truly monumental disaster, you need people with high IQs.
Such people have been told all their lives how brilliant they are, until finally they feel forced to admit it, with all due modesty. But they not only tend to over-estimate their own brilliance, more fundamentally they tend to over-estimate how important brilliance itself is when dealing with real world problems. Many crucial things in life are learned from experience, rather than from clever thoughts or clever words. Indeed, a gift for the clever phrasing so much admired by the media can be a fatal talent, especially for someone chosen to lead a government…. Even in a country which suffered none of the wartime destruction that others suffered in the 20th century, Argentina began that century as one of the 10 richest nations in the world-- ahead of France and Germany-- and ended it as such an economic disaster that no one would even compare it to France or Germany. Politically brilliant and charismatic leaders, promoting reckless government spending-- of whom Juan Peron was the most prominent, but by no means alone-- managed to create an economic disaster in a country with an abundance of natural resources and a country that was spared the stresses that wars inflicted on other nations in the 20th century.

U.S. Aims To Isolate Iran if Talks Fail
Excerpt: The Obama administration is laying plans to cut Iran's economic links to the rest of the world if talks this week over the country's nuclear ambitions founder, according to officials and outside experts familiar with the plans. While officials stress that they hope Iran will agree to open its nuclear program to inspection, they are prepared by year's end to make it increasingly difficult for Iranian companies to ship goods around the world. The administration is targeting, in particular, the insurance and reinsurance companies that underwrite the risk of such transactions. (Let us hope for spine, and praise it if shown.)

Defense Bill, Lauded by White House, Contains Billions in Earmarks
Naturally, they start with a Republican earmark. But if you don’t have clean hands on spending, you can’t criticize the Democrats effectively. I notice, however, that they don’t name the legislators who sponsored the bigger ticket items like the C-10s and the destroyer. Hummm. Could they be Democrats? Why doesn’t the Leftstream Media tell us?

Want to be a pundit? Here’s your chance.
Alas, my job doesn’t leave me time to compete.

Time to Act Like a President
Excerpt: Sooner or later it is going to occur to Barack Obama that he is the president of the United States. As of yet, though, he does not act that way, appearing promiscuously on television and granting interviews like the presidential candidate he no longer is. The election has been held, but the campaign goes on and on. The candidate has yet to become commander in chief. Take last week's Group of 20 meeting in Pittsburgh. There, the candidate-in-full commandeered the television networks and the leaders of Britain and France to give the Iranians a dramatic warning. Yet another of their secret nuclear facilities had been revealed and Obama, as anyone could see, was determined to do something about it -- just don't ask what.

Saudis Will Let Israel Bomb Iran Nuclear Site
Apparently Jews are one thing, Shi’a with nukes entirely another. Praise Allah.

Without Bush, media lose interest in war caskets
Excerpt: Remember the controversy over the Pentagon policy of not allowing the press to take pictures of the flag-draped caskets of American war dead as they arrived in the United States? Critics accused President Bush of trying to hide the terrible human cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. "These young men and women are heroes," Vice President Biden said in 2004, when he was senator from Delaware. "The idea that they are essentially snuck back into the country under the cover of night so no one can see that their casket has arrived, I just think is wrong." In April of this year, the Obama administration lifted the press ban, which had been in place since the Persian Gulf War in 1991. Media outlets rushed to cover the first arrival of a fallen U.S. serviceman, and many photographers came back for the second arrival, and then the third. But after that, the impassioned advocates of showing the true human cost of war grew tired of the story. Fewer and fewer photographers showed up. "It's really fallen off," says Lt. Joe Winter, spokesman for the Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations Center at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where all war dead are received. "The flurry of interest has subsided." (Gee, you don’t think it was just about making Bush look bad, do you?)

Linda Chavez: Immigrants moving briskly to better U.S. lives
Excerpt: Most important, they are about as likely to grow up in two-parent households as whites – 73 percent, compared with 77 percent for whites. They graduate from high school at rates slightly less than non-Hispanic whites (80 percent, compared with 92 percent of whites), but almost half go on to attend college. And those who graduate from college actually earn slightly more than their native-born counterparts. Additionally, the overwhelming majority of Hispanics born in the U.S. to immigrant parents are able to speak English well, which is key to their successful integration into American society. Contrary to the impression that Hispanics remain poor no matter how long they've lived in the U.S., upward mobility is still the rule, not the exception. Twice as many third-generation Hispanics live in households with incomes of more than $75,000 a year (nearly one-third of all third-generation Hispanics do so) than live in households with incomes less than $25,000 a year. The one worrisome trend among American-born Hispanics is the same demographic trend that plagues African-Americans and growing numbers of poor whites: rising out-of-wedlock births and an increasing number of children who grow up in female-headed households.

Pounding the table: Healthcare and the race card
Excerpt: There's an old adage popular among lawyers: If your case is weak on the law, pound the facts. If it's weak on the facts, pound the law. If your case is weak on the facts and the law, pound the table. Democrats—frustrated by the public's resistance to their grand scheme to federalize health care and desperate to discredit legitimate opposition by changing the terms of the debate—are pounding the table, invoking allegations of racism as the motivation for the opposition.

New poll: ObamaCare less popular than ever
Excerpt: Rasmussen Reports has a poll out today showing opposition to President Obama's health plan at 56 percent, and support at 41 percent. That's the lowest level of support so far this year. (Note to Blue Dogs: Vote yes for early retirement.)

Senate Panel Votes Down Second 'Public Option' Amendment
Excerpt: The Senate Finance Committee voted twice Tuesday against the creation of a new government-run health insurance plan. The panel rejected a proposal from Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W. Va.) on a 15 to 8 vote, then voted down one sponsored by Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) on a 13 to 10 vote.

Bidding for the Olympics, Chicago-style
Excerpt: Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan and the man tasked with finding a winning strategy for the war there, has talked with President Obama exactly once in more than two months. Federal officials have made one arrest in what they describe as the most dangerous terrorist plot in the U.S. since 9/11, and they have only started unraveling the conspiracy. Years before previously expected, Social Security is about to run out of money to cover the monthly checks that millions of senior and disabled Americans depend on to make ends meet. Unemployment is nearing 10 percent nationwide and has reached its highest mark since World War II among younger Americans, 52 percent. As many as 80,000 people in California's Central Valley are out of work in part because of federal environmental policies that make fish more important than people. These are only a few of the most important crises facing the nation today. And where is our president? He is in Copenhagen, Denmark, to deliver a sales pitch for Chicago to host the 2016 Olympics.

U.S. Envoy's Outreach to Sudan Is Criticized as Naïve
Excerpt: "We've got to think about giving out cookies," said Gration, who was appointed in March. "Kids, countries -- they react to gold stars, smiley faces, handshakes, agreements, talk, engagement." (Cookies. The secret weapon for winning the war on terror.)

Germany takes a right turn
Excerpt: On Sunday, German voters elected their most business-friendly, pro-American government in decades. Angela Merkel -- the leading grown-up on the world stage -- returns as chancellor. Merkel's Christian Democrats and Christian Social Union (her party's Bavarian branch) actually lost a few seats, but the pro-business, Washington-friendly Free Democrats roared back to life and more than made up the difference. On the other hand, the Social Democrats -- Germany's establishment lefties -- took their worst beating in post-war history. The hard-left Greens fell, too. Only the nut-case Left Party gained a bit of ground, thanks to protest votes. Moscow's unhappy, but resigned. The Kremlin misses former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, who did all he could to save Saddam, put Russia's interests above Germany's own -- and then went to work for a Russian energy company after leaving office. Turkey's angry. No-nonsense Merkel's no multicultural mama. She doesn't want the Middle East dragged inside the EU. President Obama may believe that Islam shaped America, but Merkel -- a Lutheran pastor's daughter who, as a teenager in East Germany, chose her faith over Communist Party privileges -- realizes that Germany's had enough trouble without dragging Mohammed into things. And her German supporters are sick of being told they have to indulge Muslim immigrants who behave barbarically.

Malaysia upholds woman's caning
Excerpt: An Islamic court in Malaysia has upheld a sentence of six strokes of the cane handed to a Muslim woman who was caught drinking beer in public. The court appeals panel in Pahang state ruled the sentence on 32-year-old Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno was just….Shukarno, a mother of two, (and former model) was arrested for drinking beer in a beachfront hotel in December 2007. She previously asked that her punishment be carried out in public, triggering a debate over the use of Islamic laws in the moderate Muslim country. (Ah, those moderate, tolerant Muslims.)

Is This Any Way To Fight A War?
Excerpt: Muslim terrorist Zazi was planning to kill on the eighth anniversary of 9/11. He and his fellow jihadis bought chemicals in beauty-supply stores to make bombs like the ones that killed hundreds in London in 2005 and Madrid in 2004. Twenty-four others were allegedly involved in the plot. A New York imam -- one who worked as an informant for the FBI -- tipped off Zazi that police were asking about him. Got that? The imam demonstrated where his loyalty lied: shariah (Islamic law), not American rule of law. His allegiance was to jihad and the murder of infidels. The city went into serious lockdown mode. While Ray Kelly was advising nervous New Yorkers about a possible Islamic attack, Barack Obama was speechifying at the UN but not talking about that very real threat at all. While the bomb-sniffing dogs and frantic actions by New York Police showed what the real threat was, Obama had a very different mortal threat to the nation in mind. He wasn't talking about the "irreversible catastrophe" that would come to New York City and the entire nation if these Muslim terrorists succeeded in their attack plots. He had nothing at all to say about the prospect of thousands of people being murdered by Islamic jihadists at a baseball or football game. No, in the upside-down world of Barack Obama's America, Dear Leader was in New York City talking about what he thought was the greatest threat to Americans and to future generations. Not Islamic terror attack, not nuclear holocaust from Iran, but global warming. "We understand the gravity of the climate threat," Obama said. It was about the climate threat that he said, "we are determined to act" and that we would "meet our responsibility to future generations." Not jihad. Not the inevitable nuclear holocaust. Not about what brought New York City to lockdown. Not about what brought New York City to its present state of controlled chaos. Global warming.

Brown turns to crime as Labour falls to third place for first time in 27 years
A leftie turning to crime. Amazing. And Brits turn away from the left.

Roman Polanski, George Orwell and Salvador Dali
Good essay on artists being exempt from moral laws. And I’d think it extends to other celebrities as well, who seem to get a pass on behavior that would condemn the average person to a ruined life. Yes, I’m thinking of Ted kennedy. And dooes the media give a pass to black politicians on corruption, for fear of being accused of racism by the black community.

L.A. Is Not 'Chinatown'
Excerpt: It's ironic that Polanski's career took off with 1974's "Chinatown," a film about moneyed interests corrupting Los Angeles criminal justice system. Polanski's villain was an older man with moneybags and taste for a young thing. Now his fans advocate special treatment -- the evasion of punishment for the new-money maven who could afford to jet off to France to avoid punishment -- while the full weight of the law falls on those without his money.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

More Racists in DC?

Picture was sent to me. I cannot verify. thanks to Photoshop, you can't trust any picture.

Political Digest September 29, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

Latest flow chart for Health Care “Reform.”
Satire….I think.

Baucus Bill May End Up Being a Mere Rough Draft
Excerpt: Baucus has promised to resume committee work Tuesday. But the fight is increasingly shifting away from him and onto the Senate floor, where 99 other independent-minded lawmakers are already scheming about how to put their stamp on what could be the most significant piece of domestic-policy legislation in a generation. In a plodding week of partisan sniping, the bill that was supposed to be President Obama's greatest hope for a grand bipartisan solution was instead described as little more than a decent rough draft, certain to be rewritten by others.

Max's Mad Mandate
The Baucus health bill will break 50 state budgets via Medicaid.
Excerpt: The more we inspect Max Baucus's health-care bill, the worse it looks. Today's howler: One reason it allegedly "pays for itself" over 10 years is because it would break all 50 state budgets by permanently expanding Medicaid, the joint state-federal program for the poor. Democrats want to use Medicaid to cover everyone up to at least 133% of the federal poverty level, or about $30,000 for a family of four. Starting in 2014, Mr. Baucus plans to spend $287 billion through 2019—or about one-third of ObamaCare's total spending—to add some 11 million new people to the Medicaid rolls. About 59 million people are on Medicaid today—which means that a decade from now about a quarter of the total population would be on a program originally sold as help for low-income women, children and the disabled. State budgets would explode—by $37 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office—because they would no longer be allowed to set eligibility in line with their own decisions about taxes and spending. This is the mother—and father and crazy uncle—of unfunded mandates.

Obama’s health insurance tax: Coming soon to all policies
Excerpt: So, a few years after the bill takes effect in 2013, the health insurance premium tax will become virtually universal. And this tax is to be a 40 percent levy. So, in six years, the average family health insurance policy, now projected to cost $25,000, will, in fact, cost $35,000 due to the Obama-Baucus tax! The Baucus bill tax threshold is, of course, not indexed for medical inflation or even for regular inflation. (Premiums have been rising at 10 percent for a decade and the average family premium now is 109 percent higher than it was 10 years ago.)

Bureaucrats muzzle criticism of Obamacare
Excerpt: Something quite disturbing is happening in the nation's capital. Bureaucrats in one of the federal government's biggest departments have issued a gag order against what they deem to be unfair criticism of President Obama's health care reform proposals. Not only are these bureaucrats making a mockery of the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of speech, they are also denying information that millions of elderly Americans have a right to receive.

Canada's lack of special care empowers brokers
Excerpt: The trouble starts when patients need treatment that isn't so routine. That's where Mr. Baker comes in. A British Columbia medical broker, he takes patients who find themselves on long waiting lists for procedures such as MRIs and surgeries, and connects them with specialists who can handle their cases immediately. Most of the time, his clients wind up in the United States - and business is booming. "That's what Americans need to know about the Canadian system," Mr. Baker said. "It's not that we have poor-quality health care - the quality is perfectly good. It's that we have poor access to health care."

The Wrong Way to Control Costs
Excerpt: Economics is the science of incentives. And most economists learn early in their careers that an efficient, workable society is one in which individual incentives are aligned as closely as possible with desirable social goals (Adam Smith’s observation, for example, that in most markets producers find it in their self-interest to meet other peoples’ needs). This is why most economists reject socialism — a system in which everyone at the bottom has a self-interest in undermining a plan imposed by a few people at the top. Turns out, there is something worse than socialism. It involves giving everyone an incentive to undermine the top-down plan and then imposing a collective punishment on all of them when they respond to the perverse incentives. Believe it or not, that is the way President Obama proposes to control health care costs.

Trial lawyers lobby sinks $6.2M in debt
The news isn’t all bad. Excerpt: The trial lawyers lobby has been awash in debt and bleeding members - just as it embarks on a national campaign to block any clampdown on medical malpractice lawsuits as part of President Obama's health care overhaul. The American Association for Justice, the most prominent group representing plaintiffs' attorneys, has seen a shake-up in its executive suite and has struggled to deal with what appears to be a mounting budget shortfall. To help it fight congressional efforts to make it harder for patients to sue doctors and lawyers, it recently sent out an extra solicitation to its members, asking them to fork over money for a lobbying campaign. The most striking evidence of its financial woes is a swift decline in income, which resulted in a more than $6.2 million deficit in its operating budget for the fiscal year ending July 31, 2008, the most recent year for which data are available. The biggest hit to its books was in membership dues, which dropped from $28.6 million in 2005 to $19.2 million in 2008, according to the annual AAJ financial report for that fiscal year filed with the Internal Revenue Service.

GOP Senators Pull Out of Inquiry into CIA Program
Excerpt: "Had Mr. Holder honored the pledge made by the President to look forward, not backwards, we would still be active participants in the Committee's review," the ranking Republican on the intelligence panel, Sen. Christopher S. Bond of Missouri, said in a statement. "What current or former CIA employee would be willing to gamble his freedom by answering the Committee's questions? Indeed, forcing these terror fighters to make this choice is neither fair nor just."

Diverse Sources Fund Insurgency in Afghanistan
Excerpt: Obama administration officials say the single largest source of cash for the Taliban, once thought to rely mostly on Afghanistan's booming opium trade to finance its operations, is not drugs but foreign donations. The CIA recently estimated that Taliban leaders and their allies received $106 million in the past year from donors outside Afghanistan. For the past decade, the U.S. Treasury and the U.N. Security Council have maintained financial blacklists of suspected donors to the Taliban and al-Qaeda. The U.N. list, originally designed to pressure the Taliban to hand over al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden, requires all U.N. members to freeze the assets of designated Taliban officials and their supporters.

Only Decisive Force Can Prevail in Afghanistan
A middle path of muddling through is the real recipe for quagmire and loss of public support.
Excerpt: Growing numbers of Americans are starting to doubt whether we should have troops in Afghanistan and whether the war there is even winnable. We are confident that not only is it winnable, but that we have no choice. We must prevail in Afghanistan.

With Obama, too much nuance, not enough power
Excerpt: Yet on Friday information became public that suggested that Obama's comments on Iran were an example not of Freudian projection but of what psychologists call "cognitive dissonance," refusing to process facts that conflict with deeply held beliefs. The information was that Iran has been operating a second uranium enrichment facility near the holy city of Qom and that it had so informed the International Atomic Energy Agency earlier in the week. In response, Obama, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and French President Nicolas Sarkozy held a press conference Friday morning before the Group of 20 summit in Pittsburgh denouncing the Iranians. "Iran is breaking rules that all nations must follow," Obama said. "International law is not an empty promise." But the Qom facility was not news to Obama. Western intelligence has long known about it, and Obama was briefed on it as president-elect. Even so, there was a sharp contrast between his wary references to Iran on Wednesday and Thursday and his sharp criticism on Friday. There were probably good reasons -- protecting intelligence sources? -- for not disclosing the information before this week. But shouldn't the president's rhetoric on Wednesday and Thursday have reflected all that he knew?

(Leftist) Ted Rall: It’s increasingly evident that Obama should resign
To be fair and balanced, I like to present views from the left from time to time. Excerpt: We expected broken promises. But the gap between the soaring expectations that accompanied Barack Obama’s inauguration and his wretched performance is the broadest such chasm in recent historical memory. This guy makes Bill Clinton look like a paragon of integrity and follow-through. From health care to torture to the economy to war, Obama has reneged on pledges real and implied. So timid and so owned is he that he trembles in fear of offending, of all things, the government of Turkey. Obama has officially reneged on his campaign promise to acknowledge the Armenian genocide. When a president doesn’t have the nerve to annoy the Turks, why does he bother to show up for work in the morning? Obama is useless. Worse than that, he’s dangerous. Which is why, if he has any patriotism left after the thousands of meetings he has sat through with corporate contributors, blood-sucking lobbyists and corrupt politicians, he ought to step down now — before he drags us further into the abyss…. Obama is cute. He is charming. But there is something rotten inside him. Unlike the Republicans who backed George W. Bush, I won’t follow a terrible leader just because I voted for him. Obama has revealed himself. He is a monster, and he should remove himself from power. (Bob: Suppressing a chortle, let’s think this through—if BO did resign, the cities would go up in flames and Biden would be president.)

Iran says its peaceful nuke program will "blind the eyes of the enemies"

If the Ground Is Shifting, the House Will Feel It
Excerpt: Heading into the summer, the political environment had been neutral to slightly positive for Democrats. But it turned in a meaningful way as Labor Day approached and anger over the growth of government under President Obama emboldened Republicans. The signs of this environmental change were everywhere. The generic ballot edge that Democrats had maintained for the better part of the last two election cycles disappeared; in the latest NBC-Wall Street Journal poll, 43 percent of respondents said they preferred a Democratic-controlled Congress while 40 percent said they would like to see Republicans running things on Capitol Hill. (As recently as April, Democrats had a nine-point lead on that question.)

Obama’s Swing-State Blues
Excerpt: Not so long ago, Democrats were thrilled by the long length of Barack Obama’s coattails. Creigh Deeds would be a lot more thrilled today if he could just step off. Mr. Deeds is the Democratic state senator running for governor of Virginia, and while he’s at it, running away from his commander in chief. It ought to worry Democrats that their top recruit for the year already views their Washington agenda as a liability. It ought to worry Mr. Deeds that there seems no escape. The Virginian’s problem is that he’s a little too important to party leaders. The Obama White House isn’t half as worried about what Virginia means for next year’s elections as it is what Virginia means for this year’s health fight. A wipeout in the Old Dominion could send Blue Dogs scampering for cover. If health care isn’t done by Nov. 3, it may not get done. Mr. Obama needs Mr. Deeds to win.

Vast Conspiracy Is Focusing On Obama, Says Bill Clinton
Proud member, vast rightwing conspiracy to preserve free markets and limited government!

Climate-Change Study Cites Role of Ancient Farming
If only they had had Cap and Trade, Gore and Obama!

Texas moves up in Forbes' best states for business list
Hummm. Low taxes attracts businesses, creates jobs. Who could have guessed?

An Insult to Our Democracy
And they call themselves “Democrats”!

Rapier-Witted Conservative Columnist Safire Dies
Excerpt: William Safire, 79, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and language maven for the New York Times, whose penchant for the barbed and memorable phrase first manifested itself in speeches he wrote for the Nixon White House, died Sept. 27 at Casey House, part of Montgomery Hospice in Rockville. (Rest in Peace.)

In Refined Bordeaux, a Struggle To Confront Slave-Trading Past
Ha. The sanctimonious French! Excerpt: Bordeaux was France's second-largest slave port in those times, sending out about 500 ships to ply the slave trade. That was about a third of those dispatched from Nantes, which was the country's largest slaving hub, where Diallo also is trying to have street names changed.

American Independence
"Interesting that many of us thought the election of Barack Obama might signal the end of American Independence as we surrendered sovereignty to the United Nations. Imagine my surprise, then, to find that Obama has decided to give up American power to a group that doesn't even officially exist: The Group of 20, which is shorthanded to the G-20. In an example of governmental inflation at its most dangerous, the G-20 was originally the G-6, then Canada was allowed to sit at the grownups table and it became the G-7. When the Soviet Union returned to being good old Russia, they were invited in and it became the G-8. The G-20 is supposed to be a meeting of the finance ministers and central bankers of the 20 largest economies. But these G-X meetings have now become summits. The meeting in Pittsburgh last week, included a significant number of the heads of states who had been in New York a few days earlier for the opening of the UN and who decided to make the trek along the Pennsylvania Turnpike to spend a day or two in the Steel City. ... Obama knows he can never cede sovereignty to the UN, but he may be able to get away with the G-20 as the international Board of Directors dealing with everything from banking regs to global warming to human rights to labor law to ... whatever. Obama knows America -- even Air America -- would never sit still for letting the United Nations make decisions for us. ... However, sharing sovereignty with the 20 largest economies on the planet is a potentially saleable deal as long as Obama doesn't say 'We are sharing sovereignty with the 20 largest economies on the planet.' You say things like, 'We are establishing new rules for international banking which will avoid the problems of last September.' One of those new rules will be an international reserve currency which does not have 'UNITED STATES OF AMERICA' printed anywhere on it. ... And we've been wasting our time worrying about Obama's relationship with ACORN." --political analyst Rich Galen. "The Patriot Post ("

From a high school friend, back in college in LA: I loathe Los Angeles. I cannot describe how disgusting this place is. The other day we learnt at college that Julius Caesar was murdered by the Conservatives in the Senate because he was "for the people." They make us work in groups in class. This means I do the work at home, and they expect me to provide the answers for free. Tomorrow I tell them the answers are now $1 each. I am seriously aiming to get back to Jersey. --Kate

Monday, September 28, 2009

Political Digest September 28, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

Little-known Republican taking on big government,0,3471207.column
Conservative hope in Blagobamaville?

Un-elect Reid Rally
Excerpt: “Reid represents not only the state of Nevada as Senate Majority Leader, but voters from Maine to Hawaii and We the People have had enough” said Chairman Harvey Jackson, former Mayor of nearby Lake Havasu City, Arizona. “We have unbelievable support from Republicans and Democrats alike, from California, Arizona and Reid’s home state of Nevada”. “This is truly a grassroots effort holding the event in his hometown” Jackson went on to say.

Congress bails out high-end auto maker
Lately, Congress has been opening their wallets to fund production of high-end sports cars that will cater to wealthy people who desire a guilt-free driving experience. Furthermore, as part of the new globalism espoused by President Obama, this bailout money will create jobs in Finland. (your tax dollars at work.)

Census asks about health insurance
Excerpt: The Census document listing the questions which will be asked reflects a new multi-part question (beginning at page 68), which collects information regarding health care insurance coverage. Question 15 on the new Census asks whether each of the following forms of insurance apply to each person in the household:

Hannah Giles Defense Fund
ACORN suing Hannah is like Nixon suing Woodward and Bernstein.

Lt. Colonel Allen West's Position Paper on Israel
Excerpt: Now we face the resurrection of the original enemy of the Jewish people, a resurgent Islamic fundamentalism evidencing itself in totalitarian, imperialist design. This time it has morphed itself using 21st century technologies still retaining a 7th century mentality, utilizing terrorism internationally to promote its perverse aims. One of those objectives is the destruction of the State the world agreed to support in creating, Israel. In keeping with previous traditions established by Muhammad, the modern Islamic warriors promote taquiyya, lying to promote Islam. They also, just as Muhammad, use the Treaty of Hudabiyya as a model to delay and deceive their enemies until they are ready to strike. Under Yasser Arafat some 200 agreements were never honored.

Poll: Big Majorities Say Objective Journalism Is Dead and that Media Back Obama
Excerpt: Two-thirds (67.9 percent) of Americans surveyed think that “objective and fair journalism is dead,” while an overwhelming 89.3 percent believe the news media played a role in the election of President Barack Obama. That is what a poll conducted earlier this month by the Sacred Heart University Polling Institute showed. The survey, “Trust and Satisfaction with the National News Media,” polled 800 people nationwide and revealed that only 24.3 percent of Americans believe all or most reporting. The poll also showed that over half of Americans – 56.4 percent – think the media are promoting the Democratic health care reform package without objective criticism, while 57.6 percent of those surveyed believed the news media tried to diminish the record of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee. Ultimately, 86.6 percent of the people surveyed think that journalists strongly or somewhat have their own political and public policy positions and attempt to influence public opinion. (You can fool some of the people….)

Dog-Feces Ice Cream
The always-entertaining Mark Steyn. Excerpt: Half a decade or so back, I wrote: “It’s a good basic axiom that if you take a quart of ice-cream and a quart of dog feces and mix ’em together the result will taste more like the latter than the former. That’s the problem with the U.N.” Absolutely right, if I do say so myself. When you make the free nations and the thug states members of the same club, the danger isn’t that they'll meet each other half-way but that the free world winds up going three-quarters, seven-eighths of the way. That’s what happened in New York last week. Barack Obama is not to blame for whichever vagary of United Nations protocol resulted in the president of the United States being the warm-up act for the Lunatic-for-Life in charge of Libya. But it is a pitiful reflection upon the state of the last superpower that, when it comes to the transnational mush drooled by the leader of the free world or the conspiracist ramblings of a terrorist pseudo-Bedouin running a one-man psycho-cult of a basket-case state, it’s more or less a toss-up as to which of them is more unreal. To be sure, Colonel Qaddafi peddled his thoughts on the laboratory origins of “swine flu” and the Zionist plot behind the Kennedy assassination. But, on the other hand, President Obama said: “No nation can or should try to dominate another nation.” Pardon me? Did a professional speechwriter write that? Or did you outsource it to a starry-eyed runner-up in the Miss America pageant? Whether or not any nation “should try” to dominate another, they certainly “can,” and do so with effortless ease, all over the planet and throughout human history.

Iran tests short-range missiles amid nuclear tension
BO said it’s up to Iran to respond to his tough talk. Guess they did.

EDITORIAL: At the president's pleasure
'Safe school czar' encouraged child sex with an older man
Excerpt: A teacher was told by a 15-year-old high school sophomore that he was having homosexual sex with an "older man." At the very least, statutory rape occurred. Fox News reported that the teacher violated a state law requiring that he report the abuse. That former teacher, Kevin Jennings, is President Obama's "safe school czar." It's getting hard to keep track of all of this president's problematic appointments. Clearly, the process for vetting White House employees has broken down. In this one case in which Mr. Jennings had a real chance to protect a young boy from a sexual predator, he not only failed to do what the law required but actually encouraged the relationship.

Religion and Politics Mix at Islam Rally on Capitol Hill
Excerpt: A Muslim prayer gathering on Capitol Hill on Friday was attended by maybe a tenth of the 50,000 people organizers were expecting. The event's PR was even less successful than its attendance, with conservative media outlets claiming that the event's two main organizers had a history of defending terrorism, making anti-Semitic comments, and expressing anti-American views. (Surprise, surprise, surprise.)

Hamas TV show teaches kids to kill Jews
And our tax dollars support these advocates of “the Religion of Peace.”

Taliban threatens Germany ahead of vote
Excerpt: In the new video, a man calling himself "Ajjub" and speaking in German said: "Because of your commitment here against Islam, attacking Germany has become an attractive idea for us, the mujahideen," according to the spokesman. The militant said it was only a matter of time "before jihad destroys German walls. "Photos of famous German sites and events then appear, including Brandenburg Gate, Munich's Oktoberfest beer festival and Cologne Cathedral. (But why attack? Given the disparate birth rates, German will be Muslim in a generation. Then they can resume seeking “The Final Solution to the Jewish Question.”)

Crowder at Berkeley
Funny - like Jay-Walking.

ACORN & SEIU Shakedown
Excerpt: As various charges and complaints have materialized over the years, it seems that ACORN uses the communities in which they are located as staging grounds for national power grabs. With multiple states and entities receiving federal funds, ACORN plays to win. Aiding ACORN are groups like DEMO’s, the Democracy Alliance, Soros Open Society Institute, and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). The Washington Examiner has covered ACORN’s: “Muscle for the Money” program: “ACORN’s so-called ‘muscle for money’ strategy extorts ‘donations’ from targeted government and corporate officials by offering them Mafia-like protection from protests by the group’s own paid thugs, many of them convicted felons. ACORN has also blocked bank mergers until the targeted financial institutions agreed to change their lending policies to ACORN’s satisfaction.

Troops 'release half of Taliban prisoners after four days'
British troops have to release captured Taliban militants after only four days because of Nato rules limiting the time they can be held.
We should have done this with Nazi prisoners in WWII—to give Hitler a sporting chance to win.

Nevada Attorney General indicts ACORN after raiding offices.
Excerpt: News just on FOX: An Acorn Field Director has "flipped", is now working with Nevada Attorney General on case against ACORN. Nevada Acorn offices raided, field manuals on how to commit Voter Registration Fraud seized.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Political Digest September 27, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

Cool: One of my poems used in David Horowitz’s News Real Blog.

Sowell on Welfare
Good, old clip of Sowell.

Obama and ACORN
Excerpt: Barack Obama gave five interviews last Sunday, and only one interviewer bothered to ask him about the ACORN scandal. ACORN is the leftist activist organization that lost its federal funds last week in a Congressional vote that was not even close. Obama's answer to his lone ACORN question was amazing. He brazened it out: "Frankly," said the President, "it's not something I've followed closely. This is not the biggest issue facing the country. It's not something I'm paying a lot of attention to." Not something he's paying a lot of attention to. This is the same Barack Obama who said, in an address to ACORN in 2007, "I have been fighting alongside ACORN on issues you care about my entire career." One of Barack Obama's jobs out of college was with ACORN as a community organizer. Obama hired ACORN affiliates for voter registration. Obama was a speaker at ACORN seminars. Obama was their lawyer. And now he says that the enormous and growing ACORN scandal is not something he is "paying a lot of attention to"? And that the ACORN scandal is "not the biggest issue facing the country"?

Massachusetts to forcefully quarantine H1N1 victims?

Palin presses White House on Afghanistan
Excerpt: During the election campaign in the U.S. last year, you might have noticed we had some differences over Iraq. John McCain and I believed in the strength of the surge strategy – because of its success, Iraq is no longer the central front in the war on terrorism. Afghanistan is. Afghanistan is where the 9/11 attacks were planned and if we are not successful in Afghanistan, al Qaeda will once again find safe haven there. As a candidate and in office, President Obama called Afghanistan the “necessary war” and pledged to provide the resources needed to prevail. However, prominent voices in the Democratic Party are opposing the additional U.S. ground forces that are clearly needed.

Gay Conservative Website

Hospitals making millions from parking charges
Don’t tell BO—funding healthcare.

New precision missile takes out the Taliban while leaving civilians unharmed
Excerpt: The Ministry of Defence has released the first cockpit footage of a new precision missile which can kill a Taliban fighter with such a small explosion that nearby civilians are unharmed. The Dual Mode Brimstone guided missile is shown blasting a gunman who has dug himself a firing position or 'murder hole' in the base of a thick mud walled compound in the heart of a village in Afghanistan's Helmand Province. Whereas the 1,000lb bombs commonly used in such air strikes would have flattened the settlement and could have killed dozens of people, the Brimstone's warhead kills the enemy gunman while barely damaging the rest of the compound, and the surrounding streets are untouched. (Nice. But you can’t win a war where the enemy can tolerate endless casualties and you can’t tolerate any.)

Virtue and Courage – What America Could Use Now
Excerpt: Ordinarily, when a 21 year-old man thinks about what he will do with the rest of his life, he thinks in terms of years. But the tall, handsome, athletic and well-educated young man being led to his date with the executioner could have only been thinking of the minutes he had left to live. It is certain that he thought of his family because just before he was executed, he hastily wrote a letter to his mother. But family members were not the only people on his mind. He also had a message for those who gathered to witness his death that day and for every American who desired to live in freedom when he spoke in defense of the cause for which he and his comrades were fighting and for which he was about to give his life. Nathan Hale said, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.” Denied a military trial, denied a Bible and denied a visit by a clergyman, Captain Nathan Hale was hanged as a spy by the British on September 22, 1776 in an artillery park near the East River in New York City. The story of Nathan Hale and his last words, which was once well-known by every school-age child in America, is about much more than just his inspiring utterance to the crowd which gathered to watch him hang. Like other school children of the 60s, I learned the story of Nathan Hale and memorized his last words without ever knowing the full story. Much to my surprise, I learned that Hale’s last words were not entirely his own. (Wait, aren’t “virtue and courage” racist? I mean, practically everything else about America is. Guess it’s a good things kids don’t learn history anymore.)

Suspected flag burner pilloried
Excerpt: VALLEY FALLS -- The young man was given three choices: get turned over to the police, go one-on-one in a fight with a seasoned war veteran, or be duct-taped to a flagpole for six hours with a sign around his neck identifying his alleged crime: flag burning. Itwas the third option that would still have the small town buzzing a week after a 21-year-old was hunted down and forced to endure a public humiliation with its roots dating to the Middle Ages. Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1938 were incensed enough to tie up the man last Sunday after they accused him of setting the flag in front of their building on fire. Post Commander Nick Normile, a Vietnam War veteran, said the man came into the post's bar Sept. 18 on Poplar Avenue and was eventually turned away for not having a proper ID. Apparently angered, the young man, who Normile did not want to name, cut the rope of the American flag flying overhead and used a cigarette lighter to set it on fire, Normile and others said.

Apparently Obama knew, wasn’t telling us about Iran’s secret nukes
Excerpt: DID it surprise a single Post reader that Iran's been hiding a big nu clear weapons development fa cility? It stunned our president when he learned about it months ago. Then he kept it secret from you. Obama didn't want you to know how much progress Iran had made. It's an embarrassment. And it raises the pressure on the White House to act -- something this president's squirming to avoid. But the Iranians have now realized we know, so they tipped it themselves. Obama had no choice but to come clean. Yesterday, he interrupted the G-20 summit to go public -- before Mahmoud Ahmadinejad did. Flanked by French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Britain's dead man walking, Prime Minister Gordon Brown, our president offered more uselessly vague rhetoric in response to proof of a major "covert Iranian enrichment facility" and its implications.

Obama Flunks the Diplomacy Test
Excerpt: President Obama knew that if the magnitude of the Iranian threat were revealed yesterday, the emptiness of his resolution would have been embarrassingly obvious and his cover blown. In public, at the highest levels of the U.N, he heralded generalities as significant. In private, he was petitioning lower levels of the U.N. to act on startling specifics of the Iranian threat. Why did the president not present this same evidence to the Security Council, the body with “the authority and the responsibility to respond”? Why did he not challenge world leaders to deal with the same Iranian threat that he privately was pressing upon U.N. bureaucrats? There is only one possible answer: President Obama does not have the political will to do what it takes to prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb.

How to Lose Friends
Excerpt: The United States does not negotiate with terrorists -- but we insist that Israel do so without preconditions. We will not get entangled in the distasteful internal politics of Iran -- but we define Israel's borders. We will remove missile defense systems in Europe so we do not needlessly provoke our good friends in Russia -- but we have no compunction nudging Israel to hand over territory with nothing in return. This week, President Barack Obama spoke to the United Nations General Assembly and insisted that Israel and the Palestinians negotiate "without preconditions" (well, excluding the effective precondition that Israeli settlements are "illegitimate," according to the administration -- so no preconditions means feel free to rocket Israel while you talk). This tact, Obama hopes, will lead to "two states living side by side in peace and security -- a Jewish state of Israel with true security for all Israelis and a viable, independent Palestinian state with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967 and realizes the potential of the Palestinian people." Hate to break the news to you, but there already exists a Jewish state of Israel with true security for all Israelis. This security is attained through a perpetual war against terrorism and Arab aggression. And the most recent time Israel withdrew from disputed lands without preconditions to allow the potential of the Palestinian people to shine through was in Gaza. The Arabs, hungering for the light of freedom, used the gift to elect Hamas -- now an Iranian proxy and always a terror organization -- to rain rockets down on the civilians who voted to allow the first democratic Arab entity in history.

Commencement Speech every student should hear
Great stuff. Don’t believe this was actually given, but it should be.

Agents shoot Obama supporters seeking health care
Excerpt: U.S. authorities shut down the nation's busiest border crossing for about four hours Tuesday afternoon after federal agents fired shots at three vans filled with illegal immigrants whose drivers tried to storm past inspectors, officials said. Three people were shot and injured in the vans crammed with dozens of illegal immigrants, authorities said, and one of the vans smashed into another vehicle as it tried to bypass border inspectors, injuring a fourth person.

Does America Need Health Care Reform?
Excerpt: Numerous polls indicate that most Americans are very happy with the health care that they receive. Specifically, nearly 90 percent of Americans responded to a poll sponsored by ABC News, USA Today and the Kaiser Family Foundation saying that they were satisfied with the health care coverage that they already have. Such solid information stands in stark contrast to the media hype about the necessity for health care reform and the hysteria promoted by the White House about the dire health care circumstances facing Americans.

NBC Producer to Americans For Limited Govt: “BITE ME JEWBOY !!!”
Excerpt: Yesterday the Folks at Americans for Limited Government emailed a mass press release to media folks all over the country it was entitled ALG Calls on Congress to "Put Up or Shut Up" on Defunding ACORN. it was nothing frothing crazy, it was a simple case of reviewing the latest scandal news about ACORN and calling on both houses of congress to follow through on their recent votes to cut all of federal funds to the criminal enterprise disguised as a charity. Like all standard press releases, this one ended with contact information, Interview Availability: Please contact Alex Rosenwald to arrange an interview with ALG President Bill Wilson. One of those press releases crossed the desk of Jane Stone a producer for NBC’s Dateline. This is the email that was returned back to Alex Rosenwald, the ALG Director of Media Outreach. She replied with a simple phrase, "Bite Me Jew Boy!" (They deny it. Can’t prove either way, since either party may have altered the e-mails provided.)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Political Digest September 26, 2009

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.

Iran Reveals Existence of Second Uranium Enrichment Plant
May 18, 2008: Iran doesn’t “pose a serious threat to us.” - Barack Obama, stating that “tiny countries” with small defense budgets cannot do us harm. (To be fair, the next day he stated, “I’ve made it clear for years that the threat from Iran is grave,” thus covering both sides of the issue.) Maybe now he’s got a clue, though I doubt he could find one in a field full during clue mating season. Time to turn loose Israel—or see terrorists with nukes. Painful choices.

Are you a racist?
Too funny.

Funny Cartoons

Democrats Are Jarred by Drop in Fundraising
Can’t think why. After all, all the protests were “astroturf” manufactured by special interests. Excerpt: As the battle over President Obama's effort to overhaul the health-care system reached a fever pitch this summer, the three national Republican committees combined to bring in $1.7 million more than their Democratic counterparts in August. The pair of Democratic committees tasked with raising money for House and Senate candidates -- and doing so at a time when the party holds its strongest position on Capitol Hill in a generation -- have watched their receipts plummet by a combined 20 percent with little more than a year to go before the November 2010 midterm elections. Large-scale defeats in the midterms could be a crippling blow to the ambitious agenda mapped out by Obama's top advisers, particularly if they happen in the Senate, where Democrats caucus with a 60-seat filibuster-proof majority. The party will have to work furiously to defend at least six Senate seats and as many as 40 in the House, including many snatched from Republicans. "If they take them back, this is the end of the road for what Barack and I are trying to do," Vice President Biden said Monday at a fundraiser for Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), whose district was held by a Republican for more than two decades before her 2006 victory.

Look who’s blaming the media now!

White House Regroups on Guantanamo
Excerpt: With four months left to meet its self-imposed deadline for closing the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the Obama administration is working to recover from missteps that have put officials behind schedule and left them struggling to win the cooperation of Congress. Even before the inauguration, President Obama's top advisers settled on a course of action they were counseled against: announcing that they would close the facility within one year. Today, officials are acknowledging that they will be hard-pressed to meet that goal (Here’s a plan. Let it leak the prisoners have drugs and money, then turn them loose on the south side of Chicago. Problem solved.)

ACORN Funded Political, For-Profit Efforts, Data Show
Excerpt: Documents released by a Senate Republican on Thursday show that leaders of the ACORN community organizing network transferred several million dollars in charitable and government money meant for the poor to arms of the group that have political and sometimes profit-making missions. ACORN's tax-exempt groups and allied organizations, long a target of conservative ire, used more than half their charitable and public money in 2006 to pay other ACORN affiliates, according to an analysis by the tax staff of Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa). On Thursday, Grassley called the transactions a "big shell game" and said ACORN donors may be surprised by how the liberal group known for helping the poor obtain housing and health care was spending their money. He urged the Internal Revenue Service to take a closer look. (I’m shocked. Shocked, I say!)

Author confirms Bill Ayers helped Obama write 'Dreams'
Interesting speculation. Doesn’t make it true. Have to see how the book is received, and the reaction. The Leftstream Media will ignore any parts that make BO look bad, but will others run with it?

Obama Youth
This apparently took place during the campaign. Missed it. Kind of scary.

Now and then
Clever matching of the Obama Youth Singers with the Hitler Youth Singers. I’m one who thinks that comparing BO to Hitler is over the top, never mind that the left spent eight years doing the same to Bush, in harsher terms. (Trotsky maybe: “The end may justify the means as long as there is something that justifies the end.” And: “Revolutions are always verbose.”) But the cult of personality is always a danger in a Democracy, as it leads to a centralization of power in the personality.

FDA Admits Error on Knee Device
Excerpt: The agency’s scientific reviewers repeatedly and unanimously over many years decided that the device, known as Menaflex and manufactured by ReGen Biologics Inc., was unsafe because the device often failed, forcing patients to get another operation. But after receiving what an F.D.A. report described as “extreme,” “unusual” and persistent pressure from four Democrats from New Jersey — Senators Robert Menendez and Frank R. Lautenberg and Representatives Frank Pallone Jr. and Steven R. Rothman — agency managers overruled the scientists and approved the device for sale in December. All four legislators made their inquiries within a few months of receiving significant campaign contributions from ReGen, which is based in New Jersey, but all said they had acted appropriately and were not influenced by the money. (Part of the “Culture of Corruption” Pork Pelosi warned us about, no doubt.)

Bad Medicine
ObamaCare is hazardous to your health.
Excerpt: But the Democratic congressional leadership, led by Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, has now offered a bureaucratic, government-intrusive health care proposal. The details change daily as the bill works its way through the Finance Committee, which Mr. Baucus chairs, for there are more than 500 proposed amendments being considered. But the bill would start off by imposing annual fees of $6.7 billion on health insurance companies, $4 billion on medical device producers, $2.3 billion on drug manufacturers and $750 million on clinical laboratories, all of which would surely be passed on to consumers in higher prices. The insurance companies' $6.7 billion fees alone would come to some 60% of the industry's after tax earnings. And then American families who do not have health insurance--the people the Democrats claim they're trying to help--would be assessed finds of between $750 to $1,900 a year. All this reflects Congress's simple objective: government rather than individual control of our health care. But America's health care is not doing badly. Indeed a National Center for Policy Analysis study from last March shows how much better we are doing than countries like Canada, Britain, and other European nations that have government health care control: Breast-cancer mortality is 52% higher in Germany and 88% higher in Britain than in the U.S. Prostate-cancer mortality is 457% higher in Norway and 604% higher in Britain than in the U.S. Eighty-nine percent of middle-aged women in the U.S. have had a mammogram, compared with 72% in Canada. Fifty-four percent of men in the U.S. have had a prostate-specific antigen test, compared with 16% of Canadian men.

Effects of the Financial Crisis on the U.S.-China Economic Relationship
Excerpt: Eswar Prasad, writing for the Cato Journal, proposed what he termed a "grand bargain" between the two countries that would cover two areas -- macroeconomic policies and international economic affair: The two countries commit to using fiscal and monetary policy to the best extent possible to stimulate domestic demand in their own economies in the short run. The Chinese allow their currency to become more flexible and responsive to market forces while the United States articulates a plan that commits it to taming its budget deficit once the economy begins to recover. The United States supports an expanded role for China in multilateral financial institutions, including significantly greater voting rights at the IMF and a key role in the Financial Stability Forum.

Smart Growth Policies’ Drawbacks Detailed
Excerpt: Smart growth policies are fundamentally flawed and in some cases actually increase many of the problems they are meant to correct, says Wendell Cox, senior fellow for housing and transit policy at The Heartland Institute and principal of an international public policy consulting firm. “Smart growth’s land rationing policies drive up the costs of land for development, which is behind the far-higher house prices relative to incomes in places such as California and Oregon,” said Cox. “This effect has been noted by economists across the spectrum, from Paul Krugman to Thomas Sowell. Because smart growth increases house prices, it must inevitably lead to lower levels of home ownership, rationing not only land but also the American Dream.” The experiences of Portland, Oregon and San Francisco, California should serve as cautionary tales to any municipalities considering implementing smart growth plans, Cox said. (Politically popular with the liberal elites. They contribute money, get green space around their neighborhoods, increasing their property values, and the poor pay more for housing. But the poor blame greedy landlords, so it’s politically a win-win.)

Stimulus Funds Boost Number of Federal Jobs
Excerpt: Stimulus critics such as Rep. Darrell Issa of California, the top Republican on the House oversight committee, say the package has enlarged the federal bureaucracy without making a dent in the nation's unemployment rate, which was 9.7 percent in August. "The only thing we have seen stimulated by this package has been the size of the federal government," Issa said in an e-mailed statement.

MSNBC Commentator: Republicans “Want to See You Dead…They Kinda Like It When That Woman Has Cancer”
Excerpt: On the Wednesday evening edition of “The Ed Show,” MSNBC commentator Ed Schultz stated that Republicans want Americans to die, and that they enjoy it when middle-aged women contract cancer. He then suggested that moderate Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine should allow tumors to spread through her body if she ever gets cancer. (Imagine the Leftstream Media reaction if Rush or Beck said this about a Democrat.)

Black Sea Wars
Excerpt: In August, the Georgian navy seized a Turkish tanker carrying fuel to Abkhazia, Georgia's former province whose declaration of independence a year ago is recognized by Russia but not the West. The Turkish captain was sentenced to 24 years. When Ankara protested, he was released. Abkhazia has now threatened to sink any Georgian ship interfering in its "territorial waters," but it has no navy. Russia, however, has a Black Sea Fleet and a treaty of friendship with Abkhazia, and has notified Tbilisi that the Russian coast guard will assure, peacefully, the sea commerce of Abkhazia.

Commit to Afghanistan or Get Out
Excerpt: President Barack Obama now faces a similar tough decision. The war in Afghanistan is not going well. The rebuilding effort isn't going well. The effort to create a competent government isn't going well. So should he commit American support if he isn't committed to doing what is needed to succeed? Mr. Obama owns the war in Afghanistan. He bought it, on credit. But he is fulminating at the cost now that the bill is coming due. Gen. Stanley McChrystal has made clear what the bill will be in terms of additional troops. And the president now wants a review to determine whether we're pursuing the right strategy. (BO was a hawk on Afghanistan—the good war—during the campaign. But he leads a party that for 40 years has wanted to cut and run whenever it got costly. And what’s it to us if the Taliban come back and throw acid in girls’ faces for going to school, of stone women for getting raped? Not like the Dems really care about such things in their lovely multicultural world. And maybe Al Qaeda will hold off until 2013, after his re-election.)

Hollywood cares more for stars than DoD does for vet heroes.
Not sure of the DoD’s reasons, but as a vet whose highest personal decoration is a richly-undeserved Good Conduct medal, I loath the phonies. Would like to have a definitive resource to call some of them.

Full Netanyahu UN Speech Part 1 of 4
Can we trade presidents? We’ll throw in a first round pick from the 2012 Democrat primaries. Full text here:

Rap fans ‘at increased car accident risk’
Presented as a public service to the many Rap Music fans among my readers. Excerpt: Drivers who listen to songs by artists such as Eminem, Dizzee Rascal and Jay-Z in their cars are most at risk of accidents, claims a new study. According to a survey of over 2,000 drivers by Auto Trader magazine, almost half of the volunteers admitted that rap or hip hop music affects their mood adversely while driving. Nearly one in five drivers say that makes them aggressive behind the wheel. Just six per cent said that listening to rap or hip hop helps relaxes them on the road, reports The Telegraph.

Man accused of plotting to bomb Springfield courthouse
Excerpt: Finton, thinking he was working for Al Qaeda, twice made a cell phone call that he believed would set off a mass-casualty bomb Wednesday in a van he had just parked outside the courthouse and near the office of a U.S. Congressman. According to the charges, Finton, also known as Talib Islam, was being watched by federal agents from the earliest moments of his alleged plot. (Another new Muslim who didn’t get the “Religion of Peace” memo, I guess.)

FBI Has Arrested a 19-Year-Old Jordanian Man Accused of Placing "An Inert/Inactive Car Bomb" Near Fountain Place in Downtown
Another Muslim didn’t get the Religion of Peace memo.

Mass. lawmakers approve Kennedy succession change
Excerpt: The final House and Senate votes came after another vote in which House members refused to attach an emergency preamble to the bill. That left it up to Gov. Deval Patrick to decide whether he'll force the measure into law immediately, instead of the normal 90 days required of all legislation. He could do so as early as Thursday, simply with a letter to the secretary of state declaring an emergency since a special election to replace Kennedy permanently won't be held until Jan. 19. But even some of his fellow Democrats have accused him of a power grab. Democrats revoked the governor's power to fill Senate vacancies in 2004, fearing then-Gov. Mitt Romney might appoint a fellow Republican if Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., won his campaign for the presidency. Instead, they created the special election campaign and beat back GOP efforts to supplement it with an interim appointment both that year and in 2006. Democrats argued voters should always fill a Senate vacancy. (Democrats in a power grab? Say it ain’t so, Joe!)

Scandals Continue for Obama Allies
First, it was the Obamaphilic gang of community organizers at ACORN generating controversy. Now, it's the lapdogs at the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). And once again, an Andrew Breitbart Web site blew the cover off. At, Patrick Courrielche, an artist and NEA grant recipient, released a full transcript of an August conference call hosted by "the National Endowment for the Arts, the White House Office of Public Engagement, and the Corporation for National and Community Service" during which strategy was discussed with a "handpicked arts group" that had worked with Obama's campaign, including the artist who created the ubiquitous "Hope" poster.

So what, you say? Well, Courrielche reports, "Later in the call, 'specific asks' were delivered by Yosi Sergant, then Communications Director of the National Endowment for the Arts," requesting that the art group "create art on several hotly debated political issues, including health care." They were also asked to join "United We Serve," a public-service project led by Michelle Obama. Buffy Wicks, who oversees Obama's national service initiative at "" (which directs activists to ACORN) at the White House's Office of Public Engagement, told participants in the call, "[W]e're going to need your help." Wall Street Journal columnist John Fund writes, "Within two days of the phone call, 21 arts organizations endorsed President Obama's health-care reform plan."

To summarize, a taxpayer-funded organization (NEA) was "asking" taxpayer-funded artists to help the Obama administration enact a government takeover of our nation's health care system. Courrielche notes, "This practice has never been the historical role of the NEA. The NEA's role is to support excellence in the arts, to increase access to the arts, and to be a leader in arts education. Using the arts to address contentiously debated issues is political subversion. And the fact that the White House played a role in encouraging the arts to address contentious issues should also be considered a government overreach." Indeed, to Barack Obama, every government bureaucracy is a potential campaign arm. The community organizer has now morphed into a government organizer.

After being caught red-handed, the NEA first "reassigned" Sergant, though when that didn't work, he resigned on Thursday. The White House also pushed out new guidelines to ensure such politicization doesn't happen again. Try not to spew coffee on your keyboard. "The Patriot Post ("

Wisdom of taxing rich questioned
Excerpt: ALBANY -- This year, the deep pockets of New York's rich were tapped like never before. The state's wealthiest pay new higher income tax rates, higher taxes for limousines and yachts, more to enter a horse in a race and more to dabble in real estate. Meanwhile, many are losing millions from the closing of business tax loopholes and those making over $1 million are losing tax deductions others get. Now, early revenue figures suggest that taxing the wealthy more under this year's state budget may have driven away richer New Yorkers. That could make the economic comeback for the state even harder. "You heard the mantra, 'Tax the rich, tax the rich,' " Gov. David Paterson said Wednesday at a gathering of newspaper editors at an Associated Press event in Syracuse. "We've done that. We've probably lost jobs and driven people out of the state." (Another Democrat belatedly discovers what conservatives have always known.)

States Worry About Sunset of Stimulus
Excerpt: State officials "expressed concern about the longer-term sustainability of their Medicaid programs after the increased FMAP funds are no longer available, beginning in January 2011," the report said. The report also found some states were using the money to free up other parts of their state budget that would otherwise have been used for Medicaid. Several states reported the funds were helping finance general state budget needs. States are also getting money to prop up their school budgets, and around $35 billion for highway work. Around $18 billion worth of highway projects had been approved by the beginning of September, the report said. Republicans have criticized the funds for state governments, saying they encourage states to postpone hard budget decisions and do little to create jobs or growth. They have also attacked the plan's effectiveness overall, citing the 26-year high in the unemployment rate last month. Members of the administration, including Vice President Joe Biden, say the plan is working, and that it has kept the recession from being worse.

U.N.: Nearly 90 percent of Afghan women suffer from domestic abuse
Excerpt: Qur'an 4:34: "Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women). So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret that which Allah hath guarded. As for those from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them." Allah says you can hit your wife. These are the consequences. "Afghan women hiding for their lives," by Atia Abawl for CNN, September 24:

Scotland's top soldier quits army in protest
Excerpt: GENERAL Andrew Mackay, one of the British Army's most senior commanding officers, has dramatically resigned his post over "dissatisfaction" with the government's handling of the Armed Forces. The head of the army in Scotland, northern England and Northern Ireland, Gen Mackay is said to have become increasing angry at the perceived lack of resources and commitment to the war in Afghanistan.

Bad news for the rest of us – the Guilt Industry is booming
Excerpt: It is the Guilt Industry. No, not the gilt industry (though that too is flourishing, thanks to the Government's borrowing binge). The Guilt Industry is completely different; it provides a living for those with an eagerness to demonise fellow citizens who spurn "progressive" values. The Guilt Industry's target market is largely, but not exclusively, Britain's middle classes, those to whom Benedict Brogan referred to in his column yesterday as "pilloried, taxed, stripped of their privileges, bound by red tape and lined up for fiscal execution". If you have a private-sector job, pay your bills, service your mortgage, invest in your property, commit no crime, save for old age (and that of your parents) and seek the best education for your children, then you have probably experienced an onslaught from the Guilt Industry's sales force. There was a time when the Guilt Industry focused mainly on white, heterosexual males. But, like Tesco, it has learnt to expand its customer base, moving up and down the social ladder, crossing ethnic and gender boundaries.

Cuban Healthcare

Letter to the Clarion Ledger Editor from a Doctor
Received this as an e-mail and can’t verify, but there is a Roger Starner Jones, MD, listed on the web as an emergency physician in Jackson, MS.

This was a "letter to the editor" in yesterday's (August 29) Jackson, MS newspaper.

Dear Sirs:
During my last night's shift in the ER, I had the pleasure of evaluating a patient with a shiny new gold tooth, multiple elaborate tattoos, a very expensive brand of tennis shoes and a new cellular telephone equipped with her favorite R&B tune for a ringtone. Glancing over the chart, one could not help noticing her payer status: Medicaid. She smokes more than one costly pack of cigarettes every day and, somehow, still has money to buy beer. And our president expects me to pay for this woman's health care? Our nation's health care crisis is not a shortage of quality hospitals, doctors or nurses. It is a crisis of culture — a culture in which it is perfectly acceptable to spend money on vices while refusing to take care of one's self or, heaven forbid, purchase health insurance. A culture that thinks "I can do whatever I want to because someone else will always take care of me". Life is really not that hard. Most of us reap what we sow. Don't you agree?

Starner Jones, MD
Jackson, MS