I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article.
Judge blocks parts of Arizona immigration law
The Democrats, having made our inner cities into a third world country, won’t be content until the entire country has the living standard and crime rate of Mexico. Excerpt: A federal judge on Wednesday blocked the most controversial parts of Arizona's immigration law from taking effect, delivering a last-minute victory to opponents of the crackdown. The overall law will still take effect Thursday, but without the provisions that angered opponents - including sections that required officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws. The judge also put on hold parts of the law that required immigrants to carry their papers at all times, and made it illegal for undocumented workers to solicit employment in public places. U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton ruled that the controversial sections should be put on hold until the courts resolve the issues. The ruling came just as police were making last-minute preparations to begin enforcement of the law at 12:01 a.m. Thursday and protesters were planning a large demonstrations to speak out against the measure. At least one group planned to block access to federal offices, daring officers to ask them their immigration status.
Anti-Illegal Immigration Group Calls for 'Safe Passage' of Illegals Out of U.S.
Excerpt: An anti-illegal immigration group is calling on the Obama administration to ensure a smooth exit for illegal immigrants who are trying to leave the U.S. due to the weak economy and Arizona's strict new immigration law. Americans for Legal Immigration PAC (ALIPAC) is urging U.S. citizens to pressure the White House and the Homeland Security Department to establish "safe departure" border checkpoints along the U.S. border for illegal immigrants so they can leave without fear of being detained or prosecuted for immigration crimes. "The peaceful and gradual exodus of illegals from Arizona shows there is no need for comprehensive immigration reform amnesty," William Gheen, president of the group, said in a written statement. "Comprehensive immigration enforcement works and has the desired effect without mass deportations." Gheen said the safe passage would ensure that illegals "leave in an orderly fashion, instead of trying risky desert crossings, paying money to the cartels for passage south, or fleeing to other states." (This makes sense. I could support this. Of course, it won't happen for that very reason. Ron P.)
How Smart Are We? By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Many of the wonderful-sounding ideas that have been tried as government policies have failed disastrously. Because so few people bother to study history, often the same ideas and policies have been tried again, either in another country or in the same country at a later time-- and with the same disastrous results. One of the ideas that has proved to be almost impervious to evidence is the idea that wise and far-sighted people need to take control and plan economic and social policies so that there will be a rational and just order, rather than chaos resulting from things being allowed to take their own course. It sounds so logical and plausible that demanding hard evidence would seem almost like nit-picking. In one form or another, this idea goes back at least as far as the French Revolution in the 18th century. As J.A. Schumpeter later wrote of that era, "general well-being ought to have been the consequence," but "instead we find misery, shame and, at the end of it all, a stream of blood." The same could be said of the Bolshevik Revolution and other revolutions of the 20th century. The idea that the wise and knowledgeable few need to take control of the less wise and less knowledgeable many has taken milder forms-- and repeatedly with bad results as well. One of the most easily documented examples has been economic central planning, which was tried in countries around the world at various times during the 20th century, among people of differing races and cultures, and under government ranging from democracies to dictatorships. The people who ran central planning agencies usually had more advanced education than the population at large, and probably higher IQs as well. The central planners also had far more statistics and other facts at their disposal than the average person had. Moreover, there were usually specialized experts such as economists and statisticians on the staffs of the central planners, and outside consultants were available when needed. Finally, the central planners had the power of government behind them, to enforce the plans they created. It is hardly surprising that conservatives, such as Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Britain and President Ronald Reagan in the United States, opposed this approach. What is remarkable is that, after a few decades of experience with central planning in some countries, or a few generations in others, even communists and socialists began to repudiate this approach.
The Flawed Assumption Behind Ending The Bush Tax Cut For The Rich
Contrary to what some readers of this blog or “I’m Tired” think, based on their posts, I am not in the $200k and over salary range (alas) though I think I am fairly compensated for my contributions. But unlike 95% of the voters, I have a basic understanding of economics, thus I am not easily manipulated by appeals to class envy. Excerpt: I’m reminded of all this by the current debate over whether the Bush tax-rate cuts should be renewed across the board or only for those with incomes below $200,000. We hear over and over that “the rich” have a lower marginal propensity to consume and, thus, smaller multipliers than the multipliers of real people, or no multiplier at all. This is supposed to justify raising taxes on the rich. Leaving aside whether $200,000 makes one rich and leaving aside the problems with applying the Keynesian multiplier concept economy-wide rather that to the individual, such a conclusion is, as they say, fatally flawed. It is flawed mainly because it confuses saving with hoarding and assumes that income not spent in the first round on consumption is not spent at all, even in subsequent rounds. I only hope my classes didn’t contribute to this confusion, which was the principle theme and flaw of the “under-consumption” theories held by Keynes’ intellectual predecessors. While lower income people probably do spend a larger percentage of their marginal income on consumption in the short run, the income of higher income people usually gets spent, either directly on physical investment or indirectly on investment after financial intermediation. Buying stocks or bonds or depositing income in a bank or other financial intermediary doesn’t mean money not spent. It just means money not spent in the first round on consumption. It is usually spent in later rounds on investment. If the marginal propensity to consume were 100 percent, there would be no investment, and, soon, no income.
Vote ‘yes’ on Proposition C
Excerpt: On Aug. 3, all eyes in the nation will turn toward Missouri, as voters in the Show-Me State become the first anywhere to cast a ballot concerning the federal health care plan foisted upon them. A “yes” vote on Proposition C — the Health Care Freedom Act — will tell the nation that Missourians have looked at this expensive, ill-conceived and unhealthy measure and reject it. Indeed, there is more at stake than health care. The ballot initiative also represents a referendum on state sovereignty. Quite simply, United for Missouri believes that the federal health care package pushed by the president and supported by the Democratic Congress treads on states’ rights. It’s a mandate on individuals and states that goes beyond proscribed federal powers. The federal health care legislation sets the nation back in three key ways. First, it mandates that every American buy health insurance, or face stiff tax penalties. Second, some employer-paid programs would be mandated, which will lead to job losses, wage cuts, loss of employer plans and accompanying choice of doctors or higher prices. All of which threaten the still struggling economy. Third, the government, rather than patients and their doctors would determine the level of care to be provided. The full scope of the health care legislation remains largely unknown. There is a reason leaders in Congress said, “We have to pass it to know what’s in it.” We already know it will cost more than we were told.
End biofuel subsidies
Excerpt: Congress finally is starting to recognize the high cost of filling up gas tanks with ethanol, the motor fuel made from corn. Billions of dollars in federal subsidies are on the chopping block. It's about time. With the national debt soaring, the government needs to wean the biofuel industry from its dependence on federal subsidies. Biofuels always have sounded better during the Iowa caucuses than they have performed in reality. Taxpayers have bankrolled biofuel research and a boom in ethanol production. Aggressive mandates have hiked the amounts of ethanol blended into the gasoline supply, and the industry is pushing for even-higher levels of the corn-based fuel in each gallon. At the same time, trade barriers have kept out cheaper ethanol produced from sugar in Brazil and other countries. Those heavy-handed government policies were intended to develop a big new domestic industry that would reduce American dependence on oil, improve the environment and bring jobs to rural communities. The goals are worthy, but for all the expensive coddling, American taxpayers have little to show for their money. Consider corn: When ethanol factories were popping up all over the heartland four or five years ago, livestock producers and food processors warned that using grain to make fuel would raise grocery prices. Not to worry, the biofuel industry responded, since corn would be phased out and inedible cellulose would be used instead. But the industry failed to deliver. "Cellulosic" ethanol, as it's called, looks like it may never roll out on a commercial scale, despite Uncle Sam bending over backward to make it happen. Last week, the Congressional Budget Office calculated how much taxpayers provide in biofuel subsidies to reduce gasoline consumption. The bottom line: $1.78 for every gallon when the biofuel is made from corn. Ethanol from cellulose costs a beyond-belief $3 a gallon in subsidies.
Establishment wins as primary and third-party challenges fizzle
Excerpt: Has the anti-establishment movement of 2010 already gone bust? Despite the voters' utter distaste for parties and the political establishment, there have been only a handful of serious primary challenges to sitting Members of Congress and even fewer viable third-party candidates have emerged in the run-up to the fall election. The reason? Money. If money is the leading indicator (and, sorry, it probably is) of viability, few incumbents have anything to be concerned about the rest of the primary season, and even fewer candidates should worry about a third-party candidate ruining their victory party.
I have a dream
A great update.
Fred Thompson: 'Catastrophic' If Bush Tax Cuts Not Renewed
When working people in the lowest bracket see their income tax rtes go up 50%, they might stop believing that BS from BO about Bush cutting taxes only for the rich. Of course, BO’s base is the 47% of folks who pay no taxes at all, including those who get money when they file though they didn’t pay, plus trail lawyers who can afford it with the rewards BO & the lawyer-congress have given them, plus government employees who get raises to offset the increases and want more taxes to support them. That’s a solid majority. Excerpt: Former GOP presidential candidate and U.S. Sen. Fred Thompson warns that not extending the Bush tax cuts could have "devastating" and "catastrophic" consequences for the American economy. "We must urge Congress and the president to renew the Bush tax cuts early, before they expire and before investors lose confidence in the U.S. economy," Thompson stated in a letter he signed on behalf of the League of American Voters, a nonpartisan organization that advocates conservative principles. Beginning Tuesday, Thompson will be promoting the proposed tax-cut renewal in a national TV ad campaign and petition drive the league is funding. (This will be interesting. The Democrats have been enthusiastic about the end of the Bush tax cuts for months now, but a lot of knowledgeable people are trying to explain the really major downside of allowing them to expire. Either the tax cuts do expire, under the Dem-controlled Congress, or some Dems will have to cross the aisle, which would be an amazing rejection of what their leadership has been saying a thousand times. If they do expire, and there is a negative effect on the economy that becomes noticeable within a year or so, it'll be one more enormous discredit to this Administration, in plenty of time for the 2012 election. The only way the Dems come out OK is if they do let them expire, and everything is just fine afterwards. So far there seems to be plenty of reason to believe that is not likely at all. –Del)
Ex-spy master blames US for web leak
Excerpt: A former Pakistani spy master has hit back at allegations he supported the Taliban, saying the US orchestrated a mass leak of confidential files in a bid to scapegoat him for its failures in Afghanistan. The claim by Hamid Gul, a retired general, is unlikely to gain much traction in Washington, where the publication of 75,000 classified reports by WikiLeaks, a website, has renewed debate over its Afghan strategy. But Mr Gul’s allegations that a hidden US government hand played a role in the huge breach of classified files may resonate in Pakistan, where anti-American sentiment runs high and conspiracy theories feed mainstream discourse. “I am a very favourite whipping boy of America. They can’t imagine the Afghans can win wars on their own,” Mr Gul told the Financial Times. “It would be an abiding shame that a 74-year-old general living a retired life manipulating the Mujahedeen in Afghanistan results in the defeat of America,” he joked. “What are they going to do to the history books for their own posterity?”
Missouri Ahead of the Game in Dealing with Illegal Immigrants
Editor's Note: The following appeared in our May 13 issue and is written by State Representative Nita Jane Ayres: We’re down to one week to go in the legislative session and bills are moving through the process at a remarkable pace. My goal is to keep you updated on all the pieces of legislation that may be of interest to you and your family. In the coming weeks, I hope to do that. However, this week I want to talk about an issue that Missouri has already addressed in a variety of ways – the issue of illegal immigration. I’m sure you’ve seen the headlines about Arizona’s new law aimed at dealing with those who enter our country illegally. It has been called the strictest immigration law in generations. While Missouri hasn’t gone to the same lengths as Arizona, our state has made significant policy changes that effectively deal with illegal immigrants who enter our state. Because of those changes, Missouri is ahead of the game when compared to many other states that are now dealing with this issue. In 2007, the Missouri General Assembly approved HJR 7 to place on the ballot a proposed constitutional amendment designating English as the official language of Missouri. Voters then went to the polls and approved the measure with nearly 90 percent voting in favor. With that, English became the official language for all governmental proceedings in Missouri. It also means no individual has the right to demand government services in a language other than English. A common language is the cornerstone of a cohesive and united state and country. Ensuring that English is our official language is simply common sense. Another measure that directly addresses the issue of illegal immigration was passed in 2008. HB 1549 requires our Highway Patrol and other law enforcement officials to verify the immigration status of any person arrested, and inform federal authorities if the person is found to be here illegally. It also allows Missouri law enforcement officers to receive training to enforce federal immigration laws. Furthermore, the bill makes it clear that illegal immigrants will not have access to taxpayer benefits such as food stamps and health care through MO HealthNet. With the passage of this legislation, Missouri sent a clear message that illegal immigrants are not welcome in our state, and that they are certainly not welcome to receive public benefits at the cost of Missouri taxpayers. (How interesting. Missouri has been way ahead on all this, and in fact seems to have gone further than the AZ law. (Which the author of this article oddly says they have not.) And nobody noticed when all this happened in MO. Will Mr. Holder now have to sue MO as well as AZ? Actually, the way courts work, the existence of the MO laws sets a precedent for the AZ law, and so does what Rhode Island has been doing for a couple of years now. This will make it quite interesting to see how the DOJ will proceed against AZ. If their attack is not supported by the courts, it will be one hell of an embarrassment for the Administration. –Del)
Pelosi, Reid: Divorced From Reality
Excerpt: A major poll just gave Congress a favorability rating of 11% — lowest in history. Never, it seems, have our representatives in Washington been so disconnected from the people they purport to serve. The disconnect was most evident in separate comments made by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid at a conference of the far-left group Netroots Nation last weekend in Las Vegas. Both weighed in on vital topics. Both revealed why they're so out of touch with reality. Pelosi told the audience she adamantly opposes raising the retirement age for Social Security and said the Depression-era program shouldn't be cut to help reduce the deficit. "When you talk about reducing the deficit and Social Security, you're talking about apples and oranges," she said. She has it exactly backward. The No. 1 problem facing this nation is the massive deficit we face over the next 75 years, due almost entirely to the expansion of Social Security and Medicare. The only way to address the deficit is to address entitlements. Social Security and Medicare trustees estimated last year that the unfunded liability — that is, future expected deficits — of the two programs is $107 trillion, or 7 1/2 times the size of our entire economy. If not addressed immediately, these shortfalls will require a tripling of payroll taxes to 37% by 2054 from 12.4% today. Governments as diverse as Germany, Greece, Italy, Spain, France and Great Britain face similar scary arithmetic and are already lengthening the amount of time workers have to work to get a public pension. They're making other cuts as well.
Matthews: Will Democrats Run Away from President O-Carter...Er, Obama?
Very funny Freudian Slip by Chris “Tingleleg” Matthews.
Obamas take 4 vacations in 1 month
Speaking as a taxpayer, I’m in favor of more vacations for this President and willing to pay for them. It’s cheaper than having him in Washington.
Intel experts: Leaks might be lethal
The fact is, politics aside, loyal Americans will die because of this, and their families will grieve. It’s too bad the WikiLeaks founder and the editors who decided to publish them will not join them rotting in the grave. Excerpt: Lawmakers and former intelligence officials are concerned that WikiLeaks’ online posting of nearly 80,000 classified field reports from combat zones in Afghanistan could have serious ramifications — not just for the war but for intelligence-gathering worldwide and for the intelligence-sharing reforms adopted after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. “It’s hard for me to express how bad this is, and it doesn’t matter that no one has found a smoking gun in this immediately. ... We’re going to get people killed because of this,” said former CIA Director Michael Hayden. “The amount of damage will be incalculable in all the meanings of the word — beyond measure and hard to measure.” WikiLeaks’ founder, Julian Assange, said on MSNBC on Tuesday that about 15,000 reports were withheld because they could have revealed the identities of Afghans who have aided U.S. forces and exposed them to “the risk of retributive action” from warlords or the Taliban.
Schadenfreude Hour: Mississippi Democrats Implode
Excerpt: My friend Kingfish brings word of the implosion of the Mississippi Democratic Party. It is in full scale meltdown because the Chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party’s wife struck up an affair with an elected Democrat. Jamie Franks, the state chairman, is getting divorced from his wife. His wife has been having an affair with Mike Scott, the school superintendent in Lee County, MS and an elected Democratic. Franks used his influence as chairman to pressure Scott to resign and threatened to sue the school district. Scott pre-empted all that by filing suit first, admitting to the affair, and accusing Franks, the local Democratic Party, and the state party of interference with his job, defamation, extortion, etc. The whole of the state party is now in flames.
Rangel, ethics panel lawyers talking settlement
Excerpt: New York Democrat Charles Rangel made a last-minute effort Tuesday to settle his ethics case and prevent a House trial that could embarrass him and damage the Democratic Party. The talks between Rangel's lawyer and the House ethics committee's nonpartisan attorneys were confirmed by ethics Chairman Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif. Lofgren said she is not involved in the talks, and added that the committee's lawmakers have always accepted the professional staff's recommendations in previous plea bargains. Rangel, a 40-year House veteran who is 80 years old, would have to admit to multiple, substantial ethics violations for any plea bargain to be accepted. Earlier negotiations broke down when Rangel would only admit to some allegations — not enough to satisfy the committee lawyers, according to people familiar with those talks who were not authorized to be quoted by name. If the talks are not successful, trial proceedings for the Harlem congressman would begin Thursday with a reading of alleged ethics violations that are still confidential.
K Street goes to the defense of Charlie Rangel
Excerpt: Every person accused of a crime or an ethics violation deserves a competent defense. Charlie Rangel's legal defense, fittingly, comes from K Street. Two of the three firms providing legal counsel to Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y., in his pending ethics cases are lobbying firms. In fact, one firm, Oldaker, Belair & Wittie, conducts much of Rangel's political fundraising, while operating four different lobby shops. But who's ultimately paying Rangel's legal bills? Mostly corporate and union political action committees along with individual lobbyists. Over the past six months, PACs and lobbyists have accounted for a majority of the money Rangel's campaign has raised this year, not counting transfers from Rangel's other fundraising operations (more on them below). In turn, Rangel funnels his campaign cash into his legal defense. In 2009, three-fourths of Rangel's $2.16 million in campaign spending went to legal fees. The House Ethics Committee allows campaign funds for legal fees that are not "primarily personal in nature, such as a matrimonial action, or could result in a direct personal benefit for the Member." Otherwise, legal fees are a legitimate use of campaign cash because "the protection of a Member's presumption of innocence in such actions is a valid political purpose," the guidelines state. That means any politically savvy donor who cut a check in 2010 to Rangel's reelection knew the donation was, in part, a contribution to Rangel's legal defense -- indeed, in the first two quarters of 2010, Rangel's campaign spent $655,232, with $230,749 (35 percent) going to legal fees. Zuckerman Spaeder LLP got biggest haul of Rangel cash -- $182,000. The firm had lobbying clients including one top drugmaker until last year, when the K Street legal shop de-registered as lobbyist.
Hall of Stolen valor
Links to recent slimeball wannabe stories.
Do you eat catfish?
Might want to watch this short video on catfish farming in the people’s paradise of Vietnam.
France Declares War on al-Qaida After Aid Worker Beheaded
Excerpt: France has declared war on al-Qaida, and matched its fighting words with a first attack on a base camp of the terror network's North African branch, after the terror network killed a French humanitarian worker it took hostage in April. The declaration and attack marked a shift in strategy for France, usually discrete about its behind-the-scenes battle against terrorism. "We are at war with al-Qaida," Prime Minister Francois Fillon said Tuesday, a day after President Nicolas Sarkozy announced the death of 78-year-old hostage Michel Germaneau. The humanitarian worker had been abducted April 20 or 22 in Niger by al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, and was later taken to Mali, officials said.
John Kerry Vows to Pay Mass. Tariffs on Yacht Berthed at Rhode Island Tax Haven
Excerpt: Sen. John Kerry's decision to dock his family's new $7 million yacht in tax-free Newport, R.I., instead of in Massachusetts, is getting the onetime presidential candidate some unwanted attention from the Boston media. Kerry clearly isn't enjoying the public relations debacle -- and it's not clear what port 76-foot sloop, the Isabel, will eventually call home. Kerry, you will recall, is the liberal Massachusetts Democrat who ran against George W. Bush for president in 2004. His yacht is berthed at the Newport Shipyard, but if it were docked in Boston Harbor or at his family's summer home on Nantucket, he would have to pay $437,000 in a one-time sales tax and annual excise taxes of $70,000. "Let's get this straight," an impatient Kerry told WBZ TV in Boston on Monday. "I've said consistently we will pay our taxes, we have always paid our taxes. It's not an issue, period. . . . There's nothing more to say about it." Pressed by reporters at an event at the South Weymouth Naval Air Station, Kerry then said to his driver, "Can I get out of here, please?" according to WBZ. A Kerry spokeswoman, Brigid O'Rourke, insisted that the senator "will absolutely pay any and all taxes that he is found to owe." O'Rourke told the Boston Globe, "Whatever the Department of Revenue [a state tax agency] determines that he owes in Massachusetts taxes, he will pay."
The damage in the Gulf
Dengue fever outbreak in Florida brings spotlight to Port St. Lucie institute's work against the global scourge
If your kid dies of this, remember it’s worth it to liberals to save some birds by banning DDT. Excerpt: Among the shopping centers and plush housing developments in the Port St. Lucie neighborhood of Tradition, researchers are working to eradicate a worldwide scourge. Scientists at the Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute-Florida in Port St. Lucie and a related institution in Oregon have been researching dengue fever for years. Now, as locally acquired cases of dengue are being reported in Florida for the first time in more than 75 years, VGTI's leaders say they have discovered promising leads they hope will eventually lead to drugs to prevent or treat the deadly mosquito-borne virus. Dr. John Schatzle, manager of scientific affairs for VGTI Florida, said the recent cases in Key West have brought local attention to what his institute has already been researching vigorously. "Think about it: People are going nuts over a few cases here in Florida, but 50 million people worldwide are getting this," Schatzle said. "It's one of those things that has such a global impact, even economically." (Another disease almost wiped out by DDT. Not specified, but clear from the text below, is that since there are no animal cases, this outbreak may have originated with a mosquito feeding on an infected human. Ron. P.)
EPA Puts ‘Environmental Justice’ Front and Center in Its Rulemaking Process
Notice the liberal elites always get to decide what “justice” is. Excerpt: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released a 55-page “guidance” to help its employees “advance environmental justice” for low-income and minority communities. “Achieving environmental justice is an Agency priority and should be factored into every decision,” the document says. The move comes 16 years after President William Clinton signed an executive order directing every federal agency to "make achieving environmental justice part of its mission." And Barack Obama campaigned on a promise to make "environmental justice policies a priority within the EPA." The EPA says its new guidelines will help its rule-writers identify potential environmental justice concerns, and it instructs them to analyze the impact of their rules on low-income and minority populations. The EPA defines environmental justice as the “fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people, particularly minority, low-income, and indigenous populations, and tribes, in the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.” (Be sure to enjoy your environmental justice; soon, we'll have health justice, too. Ron P.)
The Leaker's Accomplices?
Excerpt: Criminal investigators suspect that the young Army intelligence analyst accused of turning over a trove of classified material to the whistleblowing website WikiLeaks had computer-savvy civilian accomplices in the U.S. and elsewhere who helped direct him to gather information, government officials say. Investigators from the Pentagon and the Justice Department are trying to retrace the travels of the suspected leaker, 22-year-old Bradley Manning of Potomac, Maryland, during a visit home to the U.S. last winter in which he appears to have told friends that he was considering leaking the information. Manning was based at the time in Iraq. Officials tell The Daily Beast they suspect the possible civilian accomplices in the U.S. and elsewhere may have helped direct Manning to Julian Assange, the elusive Australian-born founder of WikiLeaks, who then organized an electronic pipeline that allowed Manning to transmit the information secretly.
Why Vietnam Truth Matters
Excerpt: "In my rush to finish my statement in five minutes, I may have left out the fact that Vietnam is one nation today.” So spoke Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee on July 16, regarding her 5 Minute Special Order on July 15, given on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives. Rep. Jackson serves on the Committee on Foreign Affairs and had recently visited North Afghanistan (or was it West Afghanistan) to help her conclude that we must set a date certain for withdrawal of our troops from wherever the hell they are by next June or July. If two stupid statements make a smart statement, Rep Lee probably seems brilliant to her liberal cohorts and followers. “In my review of the play performed so brilliantly at Ford’s Theater last evening, I may have left out the fact that President Lincoln was shot.” Rep Lee further demonstrated her grasp of military strategy by going on to suggest that the methodology for leaving Afghanistan is to “demand that the central government of Afghanistan provide” a laundry list of essential services that governments are obviously supposed to provide—without which they are not really governments. She then perhaps in an epiphany of Congressional fact finding wisdom blurted out what should rightly become the Jackson Lee Strategy—declare victory! Wow. Not since reading North Vietnamese Genius General Giap’s strategy—“hit the enemy where he is weak or relatively weak or even where he is strong”—have I felt the military equivalent of ‘Eureka’ quite so strongly. Apparently, if I am following her military history lesson, America waited too long to declare Victory in Vietnam and therefore…..well, I kind of lost her train of thought at this point. But evidently she has discovered that we are at that magic ‘declare Victory and come home’ point in Afghanistan if only we demand that the Afghan government shape up and act like a stable and efficient government. In her July 16, statement she also chastised the U.S. government (one of those governments between 1963 and 1975 one would assume) for not (and I’m not making this up) working “with Vietnam toward being a democratic state.” The Congresswoman then closes the statement with a sentence neatly tying things up—“I believe my special order yesterday [the one with two current Vietnams] was very clear.” Had she said, “I was clearly drunk,” I would have respected her more. Okay, for the record one more time—There was South Vietnam (a struggling democracy) and North Vietnam (a brutal communist government). We were allies with the South as they fought off the North trying to take them over. We beat the North in 1973. They signed a Peace Treaty. America came home. The communists launched a new attack and the U.S. Democrat controlled Congress abrogated the treaty and our obligations. North Vietnam overran South Vietnam so it became ONE communist, brutally ruled country to the death and miserable detriment of hundreds of thousands of our former allies. Those of you who cannot see the folly and danger of using ignorance of the truth in Vietnam as a platform for our current and future foreign policy (and military strategy) are quite hopeless.