Friday, August 20, 2010

Political Digest August 20, 2010

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.

Dismantling America: Part III by Thomas Sowell
http://townhall.com/columnists/ThomasSowell/2010/08/19/dismantling_america_part_iii
Excerpt: Gratuitous affronts to both Britain and Israel began early in the Obama administration, including a clear downgrading of state visits from their national leaders. These affronts were pitched at a level unlikely to be noticed by the general public but unmistakable to anyone familiar with international relations, including both our allies and our enemies. But most of the pro-Obama media said little to alert the public. It is not only in our foreign relations that the administration's commitment to the national security of the United States is open to serious question. Domestically, as well, the same serious and painful questions arise. After spending hundreds of billions of dollars on political pork barrel projects from coast to coast-- some frivolous beyond belief-- its only major cut in federal spending has been its move to cut $100 billion from the Defense Department's budget. If there was ever a time when we needed a larger standing army, as distinguished from relying on National Guard troops, taken suddenly from civilian life and sent on multiple tours of combat duty, this is that time. We need a bigger and constantly modernizing military, not a bargain basement military, trimmed down to leave more money for pork barrel spending.

'The enemy, they love to hit the Marines'
http://www.kval.com/news/national/100944324.html
Excerpt: “Go ahead,” says SSgt. Joe Zamora, the Platoon Sergeant. The Marine busts open the door, and the three men push forward into the field within the mud building. They immediately receive fire from behind and jump down into the ravines. “One shot came over the wall and almost hit me in the head,” one of the Marines says later. No one is surprised when rounds fly through the air. This day's mission is to locate and engage the enemy in a firefight. “We always get contact when we get up there,” says Zamora, who heads outside the wire every other day. “I can’t stay back here knowing that my guys are out there. And the days I don’t go on patrol and I‘m here and I hear they’re in contact, it just drives me crazy.” As expected, Zamora and his men receive contact a few hours into the patrol, although those hours pass by like minutes. “The enemy, they love to hit the Marines, or they like to engage the Marines when we’re in the open,” says Zamora. (Marine SNCO's...still setting the example and leading from the front. Ooh Rah! –MasterGuns JL)

Backbone of the Corps
In my recruit platoon in 1964, one of the privates asked the DI, "Sir, the Drill Instructor said that NCOs are the backbone of the Corps. Why did the Drill Instructor say that, Sir?” “Because I am one, you damn fool," Sgt. Martin shot back.

New Devil Pups
http://www.grunt.com/scuttlebutt/marine-corps-bs/devpups1.asp#bates
And: http://www.grunt.com/scuttlebutt/marine-corps-bs/devpups1.asp#gonzales
Lest we forget the sacrifices being made in our behalf.

Plane, possibly North Korean, crashes in China field
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081801197.html?wpisrc=nl_pmheadline
Excerpt: A plane believed to be a military fighter jet crashed into a fruit field in northeastern China on Tuesday, and China's official state-run news agency said the aircraft might have come from North Korea. The pilot was killed in the crash, according to the Xinhua new agency report and an eyewitness interviewed by telephone. Two bungalows were also destroyed, although the witness, and the sketchy Chinese news agency report, said no one on the ground was injured. Some reports from South Korea quoted unidentified sources in Seoul as saying the pilot may have been a North Korean flying over Chinese airspace while trying to defect to Russia. A defection by a North Korean pilot in a fighter jet would be highly unusual and a potential embarrassment to the regime of Kim Jong Il, at a time when he is believed to be trying to pave the way for his son, Kim Jong Eun, to succeed him as North Korea's leader. 9How bad are things when Russia looks like a place to defect to? ~Bob)

Bloomberg's quiet investments in Sharia Finance: an ulterior motive in backing Ground Zero's Victory Mosque?
http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2010/08/bloombergs-quiet-investments-in-sharia.html
Excerpt: Lower Manhattan's St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church once sat across the street from the World Trade Center's Tower Two. It was leveled during the catastrophic attacks of 9/11. For years, church officials have attempted to get permission to rebuild. Yet the New York Port Authority and other local bureaucrats have thrown every obstacle in the book at the rebuilding project. They said the proposed new church was too big and its dome too high -- even claiming that the structure could rise no higher than the WTC Memorial. St. Nicholas Church’s difficulty in getting approvals to rebuild stands in stark contrast to the treatment that the developers of the proposed Cordoba mosque have received...New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, state Atty. Gen. Andrew Cuomo, and a raft of city officials have all come out publicly in favor of building the mosque, and the city’s Landmarks and Preservation Commission recently voted unanimously to deny protection to the building currently occupying the site where the mosque is to be built. The mosque is proposed to rise 13 stories, far above the height of the World Trade Center memorial, with no height restrictions imposed......The contrast has not been lost on at least one candidate for Congress. George Demos is a Republican running in New York’s 1st Congressional District... Demos said it is the church that has been unjustly delayed. “One place of worship was destroyed in the attacks. That should be the first thing on that board’s agenda. That should be the first priority,” he said. “There were actually relics of St. Nicholas in that church that were lost in the attacks. Why is it that the same government officials who are so fervently fighting for the mosque’s right to be built aren’t also fighting for the church to be rebuilt.”

Daddy issues at E. Side institution
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/manhattan/daddy_issues_at_side_institution_yWuiu3yHwsKuvfLKQFEGgN
See once they build the Ground zero Mosque, they’ll be able to get the truth out—it was the Joos what did 9/11, not members of the Religion of Peace. Excerpt: In October 2001, the mosque's imam, Sheik Muhammad Gemeaha, blamed the 9/11 attacks on Jews. He then immediately resigned and returned to his native Egypt. The next month, his replacement, Imam Omar Saleem Abu-Namous, said he needed proof that Islamic extremists were behind the attack.

22 States Now Following Arizona's Illegal Immigration Crackdown
http://www.alipac.us/ftopicp-1105218.html#1105218
Excerpt: America's third largest national organization, focused on fighting against Amnesty and illegal immigration, is announcing that 22 states now have lawmakers pushing versions of Arizona's illegal immigration crackdown bill SB 1070 following announcements by GOP lawmakers in Colorado and Alabama. Americans for Legal Immigration PAC's activists supported the passage of the new Arizona law and have helped pass other immigration enforcement measures in many states. Colorado and Alabama are moving forward despite setbacks to the law delivered by lone liberal judge Bolton who sided with illegal aliens and President Obama against the American public and the AZ Legislature. ALIPAC's strategy to help defend Arizona from intensive attacks from the nation of Mexico and the Obama administration has been to spread the law to other states to illustrate the popularity and wisdom of the legislation.

A Blagojevich retrial? Don't expect smiles from White House
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081801131.html?wpisrc=nl_pmpolitics
Excerpt: The nearly instant decision by federal prosecutors to retry former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich is bad news for the disgraced politician, who was convicted Tuesday of only one of 24 counts in his conspiracy trial. President Obama and his top aides had come through the two-month trial with precious little damage to either their reputations or their agenda. What had once appeared like it could be a political minefield for Obama -- the trial centered, after all, around whether Blagojevich desired to sell his old Senate seat -- instead became a sideshow with relatively little impact, and neither the sitting president nor any of his senior aides had been dragged into testifying. But if U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald has his way, there will be a new trial. New attempts by the prosecution to build a case against Blagojevich. New efforts by the defense to subpoena Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and senior adviser Valerie Jarrett to the stand.

Senate Democrats' Florida Conundrum
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/senate/democrats-florida-conundrum.html?wpisrc=nl_pmpolitics
Excerpt: Florida Rep. Kendrick Meek's (D) growing strength in advance of the Aug. 24 Democratic primary Senate fight against billionaire investor Jeff Greene (D) presents an interesting conundrum for many establishment Democrats who have long believed that their best chance of winning the seat rests on the independent candidacy of Gov. Charlie Crist. Two new polls show Meek opening up a steady lead over Greene. In a Quinnipiac survey released this morning, Meek holds a 35 percent to 28 percent lead over Greene while a Mason-Dixon poll put the Miami-area Democratic Congressman's edge at 14 points. On its face, that news should warm the hearts -- do they have them? (we kid) -- of Democratic party strategists. After all, Greene's candidacy has been -- to coin a phrase -- an absolute shipwreck. A series of stories detailing his life as a bachelor aboard his yacht "Summerwind" as well as his close relationship with former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson would provide Republicans unending fodder in the fall with which to attack him. But, that analysis overlooks the worst kept secret in Florida Democratic politics: most party strategists don't believe Meek can win a general election but they do think he can siphon enough traditionally Democratic votes away from Crist to hand the race to former state House Speaker Marco Rubio. Democrats have semi-openly admitted that with Greene as the party's nominee, they would feel little remorse in casting a vote for Crist -- believing that the billionaire businessman is not fit to serve in the Senate. The same cannot be said of Meek.

Exercising new ability to spend on campaigns, Target finds itself a bull's-eye
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081806759.html?hpid=topnews
You won’t catch John Kerry, George Soros or any of the Kennedy clan in a Target again! Excerpt: When Target gave money in July to a pro-business group in Minnesota, the company thought it was helping its bottom line by backing candidates in its home state who support lower taxes. Instead, the retailer has found itself in a fight with liberal and gay rights groups that has escalated into calls for a nationwide boycott and protests at the company's headquarters and stores.

Poll shows more Americans think Obama is a Muslim
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081806913.html?wpisrc=nl_headline
Not me. I think he’s a secular humanist who panders to Muslims to garner leftist support, who pretended to be a “Liberation Theology Christian” when he need local black support, tossed it aside when he needed to appeal to a wider audience. If he was a Muslim, he’d have to believe there was something more important than Barack Obama. Excerpt: The number of Americans who believe -- wrongly -- that President Obama is a Muslim has increased significantly since his inauguration and now account for nearly 20 percent of the nation's population. Those results, from a new Pew Research Center survey, were drawn from interviews done before the president's comments about the construction of an Islamic cultural center near Ground Zero, and they suggest that there could be serious political danger for the White House as the debate continues.

The wrong year to have a famous political name
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/governors/the-wrong-year-to-have-a-famou.html?wprss=thefix
Excerpt: A famous political last name ain't what it used to be. One budding political dynasty beat another Tuesday in the Wyoming governor's race as former U.S. Attorney Matt Mead, the grandson of former Gov. and Sen. Cliff Hansen, bested state House Speaker Colin Simpson, the son of beloved former Sen. Alan Simpson. (Simpson actually finished a disappointing fourth.) Offspring of current and former politicians have been having a tough go of it this year, performing poorly in primaries and facing a difficult environment in which their last name is as often regarded by voters as a negative rather than a positive.

Obamacare’s stealth ambush of senior citizens
http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/beltway-confidential/obamacares-stealth-ambush-of-senior-citizens-101007754.html
Excerpt: Even Obamacare’s biggest cheerleaders won’t be able to ignore Medicare chief actuary Richard Foster forever. Based on current law, Foster says, seniors who rely on Medicare will replace Medicaid recipients at the bottom of the health care ladder as early as 2019, five years after the individual mandate kicks in. That’s when the fees Medicare pays to providers will be slashed below Medicaid rates, which are already well below market prices. “And if you’re in a plan that pays the lowest rates, you’re in trouble,” John Goodman, president of the National Center for Policy Analysis, told The Examiner. That’s because the $575 billion cut to Medicare over the next decade — which is needed to pay insurance subsidies for 32 million new people — will force one in seven hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies and hospices out of business, according to the formal Medicare trustees report released on April 22. By 2050, 40 percent of existing health care facilities will forced to close their doors. Nearly half of the 32 million newly insured people will be enrolled in Medicaid (those whose incomes are at or below 133 percent of the poverty line will have no choice), but they shouldn’t expect the level of care that current Medicaid recipients receive, Goodman adds.

Given Money, Schools Wait on Rehiring Teachers
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/18/business/economy/18teachers.html?_r=1
Excerpt: As schools handed out pink slips to teachers this spring, states made a beeline to Washington to plead for money for their ravaged education budgets. But now that the federal government has come through with $10 billion, some of the nation’s biggest school districts are balking at using their share of the money to hire teachers right away. With the economic outlook weakening, they argue that big deficits are looming for the next academic year and that they need to preserve the funds to prevent future layoffs. Los Angeles, for example, is projecting a $280 million budget shortfall next year that could threaten more jobs.

Scores Stagnate at High Schools
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703824304575435831555726858.html
Excerpt: New data show that fewer than 25% of 2010 graduates who took the ACT college-entrance exam possessed the academic skills necessary to pass entry-level courses, despite modest gains in college-readiness among U.S high-school students in the last few years. The results raise questions about how well the nation's high schools are preparing students for college, and show the challenge facing the Obama administration in its effort to raise educational standards. The administration won bipartisan support for its education policies early on, but faces a tough fight in the fall over the rewrite and reauthorization of the No Child Left Behind program.

Pointed exchange with Frank propels Harvard graduate in Illinois contest
http://www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2010/08/19/pointed_2009_exchange_with_frank_propels_harvard_grad_in_illinois_race/
Excerpt from Boston Globe: Dressed in a crewneck sweatshirt, jeans, and sneakers, the third-year Harvard Law School student stood up calmly and approached the microphone at the Kennedy School of Government. Little did he know this would be his political baptism. Joel Pollak was there to question US Representative Barney Frank, who had just finished a speech on financial regulatory reform. Pollak’s query was provocative, but hardly impolite: “How much responsibility, if any, do you have for the financial crisis?’’ Frank, the powerful chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, pushed back hard, lambasting Pollak for asking an “accusatory’’ question, dismissing his arguments as “totally wrong,’’ and asserting that he was part of a “right-wing attack on liberals.’’ Almost instantly, the contretemps, in April 2009, made Pollak, at 31, a conservative cult hero. The moment — later dubbed the “Crimson Clash’’ — became a YouTube sensation and sparked national media coverage. It also sparked a candidacy. Pollak, inspired by the encouragement he received from Republicans after his composed performance in the confrontation, has returned home to suburban Chicago to challenge another established Democratic lawmaker, US Representative Jan Schakowsky, in Illinois’ Ninth District.

Birthright hearings would be déjà vu
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0810/41245.html
Excerpt: In the mid-1990s, House Judiciary Committee panels held two separate hearings on birthright citizenship, the policy protected under the 14th Amendment that automatically grants citizenship to people born in the United States. What's striking is that the hearings on GOP-sponsored bills and resolutions then featured many of the same arguments as now, when some Republicans are calling for denying citizenship to the U.S.-born children of illegal immigrants. Not only that, but some of the very same lawmakers now engaged in the heart of the debate were active back then as well, whether Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) arguing in favor of a change or Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) arguing against. In the end, the effort went nowhere - and the hearings give a clue as to why, because of the knotty constitutional and legal questions posed by overhauling the Reconstruction-era amendment.

Mexico Under Siege--Business Heads Plead as Drug Gangs Terrorize Wealthy City
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704557704575437762646209270.html?mod=WSJ_hps_MIDDLESecondNews
Excerpt: A surge of drug violence in Mexico's business capital and richest city has prompted an outcry from business leaders who on Wednesday took out full-page ads asking President Felipe Calderón to send in more soldiers to stem the violence. The growing violence in Monterrey, long one of Mexico's most modern and safe cities, is a sign that the country's war against drug gangs is spreading ever further from poorer battlegrounds along the border and into the country's wealthiest enclaves. Residents opened their newspapers Wednesday morning to find the ads taken out by Mexican business leaders, begging the government to send more military into the city. "Enough already," said the notice that ran in national and local papers, criticizing what it said was a slow response of police against "criminal bands that in every act look to establish a new boundary of terror."

NC Senator Kay Hagan gets yelled at by angry parent
http://www.therightscoop.com/nc-senator-kay-hagan-gets-yelled-at-by-angry-parent
Excerpt: I know a lot of you are from NC and that you will especially appreciate this video. I wrote Hagan a letter myself which of course made no difference – which is the reason we have to get her out of office when her turn is up. Until then, I say ‘November 2010′!

The Right to Lie
http://www.thenewamerican.com/index.php/usnews/constitution/4351-a-constitutional-right-to-lie
Excerpt: The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has long been known as the most left-wing federal court in America, its decisions descending into legal insanity. Now, the Court has delivered itself of its latest left-wing legal legerdemain: Americans have a First Amendment right to lie about whether they have earned the Medal of Honor. The Court ruled in the case of Xavier Alvarez, who didn’t get caught wearing the medal but simply lied about it. He was tried for violating the federal Stolen Valor Act. A new member of the Three River Valley Water Board in California in 2007, he made the following claims in his introductory remarks: “I’m a retired marine of 25 years. I retired in the year 2001. Back in 1987, I was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. I got wounded many times by the same guy. I’m still around.” As the New York Times put it, “only the last three words were true.” Apparently, Alavarez is a bit of a nut case. He has claimed to be a member of the Detroit Red Wings, the Times reported, and to have rescued the American ambassador to Iran during the hostage crisis during the Carter Administration. Reported the Times: “There’s no question he’s pathological,” said Bob G. Kuhn, the board’s president, recounting some of what has come out of Mr. Alvarez’s mouth. “He’s had three helicopter accidents. He’s been shot 16 times. These are all fabrications.” But Mr. Kuhn said the board was powerless to expel Mr. Alvarez, who continues to receive $200 per meeting and health insurance. The board has censured him, though, for putting a woman he falsely claimed was his wife on the board’s health plan. Alvarez faced two years in prison and a $200,000 fine for telling the ultimate lie: that he wore the nation’s highest military decoration and belonged to the storied ranks of Audie Murphy, Alvin York and Rocky Versace.

Deficits and National Debt Increases
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FILE:Deficits_vs._Debt_Increases_-_2009.png
Good Chart. Note that the deficits were tending downward until budgets passed by the Democrat-controlled congress in 2007 and 2008.

Power Struggle Among Russia's Militants
http://www.stratfor.com/weekly/20100818_power_struggle_among_russias_militants?utm_source=SWeekly&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=100819&utm_content=readmore&elq=9446e310f0004fba9e20dd1538ee6983
Excerpt: On Aug. 12, four members of the militant group the Caucasus Emirate (CE) appeared in a video posted on a Russian militant website withdrawing their support from CE founder and leader Doku Umarov. The reason for the mutiny was Umarov’s Aug. 4 retraction of his Aug. 1 announcement that he was stepping down from the top leadership position. STRATFOR and many others noted at the time that the Aug. 1 resignation was unexpected and suggested that Umarov may have been killed. However, the Aug. 4 retraction revealed that Umarov was still alive and that there was considerable confusion over who was in control of the militant group.

The Islamo-Fascist
http://frontpagemag.com/2010/08/19/the-islamo-fascist-3/?utm_source=FrontPage+Magazine&utm_campaign=54a00d4683-RSS_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email
Excerpt: In the 2008 Tom Cruise movie “Valkyrie” about the July 20, 1944 plot to kill Hitler, Major Otto Ernst Remer is portrayed as key to suppressing the anti-Hitler coup. When Remer was arresting Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels, unknowingly at the behest of the anti-Hitler plotters who claimed Hitler was dead, Goebbels slyly handed a phone to Remer. ”Do you recognize my voice?” a dark presence over the phone inquired of Remer, who immediately recognized the Fuehrer. Hitler ordered an obedient Remer to capture alive all the conspirators against him, presumably so their eventual deaths could be suitably tortuous. Their assassination attempt having failed to more than wound Hitler, the Valkyrie plotters quickly imploded. Major Remer, portrayed by German actor Thomas Kretschmann, led his Greater Germany Regiment, which was responsible for security in Berlin, to arrest the anti-Hitler conspirators. The movie portrayal is largely accurate. In the less than one year of war remaining for the Third Reich, the 32 year old Remer was rewarded with promotion to Major General. Remer lived until 1997 and was devoted to Hitler and the Third Reich until the very end. His efforts to revive Nazism, and to deny the Holocaust, eventually forced him to leave Germany. Like other old Nazis, he found temporary refuge, and work, in Egypt and Syria during the 1950’s, before dying in Spain. A 1993 Egyptian newspaper interview outlined his views about Israel, Islam, the Palestinians, Iran’s Islamic Republic, and the United States. He was interviewed for Cairo-based “Al Shaab” by a Moroccan Islamist Ahmed Rami, who previously had been imprisoned in Sweden for “anti-Zionist” activity, i.e. Holocaust denials. “General Remer is a true friend of the Arabs and Muslims,” the article enthused. “He follows the problems and worries of our Islamic nation closely, as an observer and a friend,” it noted, recalling Remer’s role as military advisor to Egyptian President Nasser in the early 1950s and his later residence in Syria. The Egyptian newspaper hailed Remer as one of the Third Reich’s most “brilliant generals,” when actually he had been promoted beyond his talent because of his role in suppressing Valkyrie. Unsuccessful in combat leadership, his accomplishment was confined mostly to destroying the few Germans who tried to save Germany from Hitler.

The Growing Detachment of the Political Class
http://www.redstate.com/erick/2010/08/18/the-growing-detachment-of-the-political-class/
Excerpt: One of the talking points, shared by some Republicans and all the Democrats and talked about by many reporters as if it is fact, not opinion, is that the tea party activists have elected a host of extremist candidates who cannot win and are badly out of touch with America. Consider, however, what isn’t being bullet pointed: 57% think the Democrat agenda is “extreme”. 60% favor repeal of Obamacare. 56% disapprove of Obama’s job performance. 61% favor immigration laws like Arizona just passed. 68% oppose the Ground Zero mosque. 65% are angry at federal government policies. 65% say America is on the wrong track. And then consider this: those candidates the Democrats and talking heads are saying are extreme on the Republican side are either ahead or neck and neck with the Democrats.

Dem Congressman Bans Signs at Town Hall, Ignores 1st Amendment
http://worth-reading-blog.blogspot.com/2010/08/dem-congressman-bans-signs-at-town-hall.html
VIDEO: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THh99Pr2Ao8&feature=player_embedded
Excerpt: Arrogant Democrat Congressman Tom Perriello institutes a "sign-ban" on his own constituents in Virginia's 5th District. A clear violation of the First Amendment, Perriello was ordered to rescind the ban or face legal action Banning political signs is a tactic first recommended last year by Health Care for Americans Now (HCAN) a front group for the SEIU. Their instructions to Democratic lawmakers and their union allies read: "Another way to limit protesters’ ability to hijack your event is to confiscate signs or leaflets that they may bring into the venue from outside. The best way to do this is to make a blanket rule that no one can bring signs or leaflets and to advertise this fact as you do turn out in the weeks preceding the event. You can distribute your own signs in the event and offer them one as they enter if you choose to allow them

9/11 Families: Pelosi Has Lost Her Mind
http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2010/08/18/911-families-pelosi-has-lost-her-mind/
What mind? Excerpt: Families of the 9/11 tragedy immediately jumped all over the top House Democrat. “I think it’s outrageous. She’s investigating 9/11 families whose sons were murdered on 9/11 rather than look at foreign entities that sponsor terrorism? I think she has her priorities mixed up and she’s lost her mind,” said Jim Riches, a former firefighter who lost his son in the World Trade Center attacks. “They can look into all our funding. We’re regular families, regular citizens, like people who protested in 1776. We’re ordinary citizens and she’s coming out against us because we disagree with her.” Actually, a lot of people disagree with building a mosque at ground zero. A new Siena poll found that 63 percent of New Yorkers don’t want the mosque built near ground zero. Only 27 percent support it.

Lost in Electronica: The costs of ‘the chaos of constant connection.’
http://www.newsweek.com/2010/08/14/will-boredom-and-the-costs-of-constant-connection.html
Excerpt: Can trout be bored? Can dolphins or apes? Are they neurologically complex enough to experience boredom? What might boredom mean to such creatures? Humanity can boast that it is capable of boredom, but there may now be an unhealthy scarcity of that particular brain pain. Human beings evolved over dangerous eons. Brains formed in response to constant hazards may react with boredom when exposed to the safety of modern life. Perhaps flight from boredom prompts people today to take refuge in constant stimulation by visual and audio entertainments. Adam J. Cox is a clinical psychologist worried about the effect of today’s cornucopia of electronic stimuli on the cognition of young boys. Writing in The New Atlantis, he says human beings evolved in a world of nutritional scarcity and have responded to the sudden abundance of salt, sugar, and fat by creating an epidemic of obesity. And, he says, the mind, too, now craves junk nourishment: “Fifty years ago, the onset of boredom might have followed a two-hour stretch of nothing to do. In contrast, boys today can feel bored after thirty seconds with nothing specific to do.” The ubiquitous barrage of battery-powered stimuli delivered by phones, computers, and games makes “the chaos of constant connection” an addictive electronic narcotic. As continuous stimulation becomes the new normal, “gaps between moments of heightened stimulation” are disappearing; amusement “has squeezed the boredom out of life.” For the hyperstimulated, “the synaptic mindscape of daily life” becomes all peaks and no valleys. ( A really interesting thought about modern life and the explosion of entertainment devices. How often do we see kids in supermarkets, on planes, in waiting rooms, at the dinner table, glued to some tiny screen with thumbs flashing across the tiny keyboard? Or conversely, how seldom do we see kids who are not doing that, but are reading a book of any sort? --Del)

Ground Zero Mosque’s Hidden Websites: Follow the Shariah
http://bigpeace.com/cbrim/2010/08/17/ground-zero-mosques-hidden-websites-follow-the-shariah/
Excerpt: What’s the goal? Maybe the Imam’s goal is not simply to force a provocative “insensitivity” about 9-11 on the American public, with the help of America’s elites. Maybe the Imam’s long-term goal is to force Shariah law on the American public – of course, again, with the help of America’s elites.

The Professional Left vs. the Amateur Right
http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/the-professional-left-vs-the-amateur-right/?singlepage=true
Excerpt: "I hear these people saying (Obama) is like George Bush. Those people ought to be drug tested. … I mean, it’s crazy. … The professional left … will be satisfied when we have Canadian health care and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality. … They wouldn’t be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president." That is, perhaps, the first objective analysis we’ve heard from Gibbs in his career as Obama’s press secretary — and it’s likely to be the last one. For speaking his mind, Gibbs has been urged to resign in disgrace, as if he had committed treason. We may laugh it off, and leave it at that, but the left’s ferocious attacks on Gibbs might be caused by something more sinister than a mere suggestion that on the planet of Hopeychangia, reality is a buzzkill. The latter is not a secret; neither is the fact that the truth is to the loony fringe what the cross is to the vampires. If that were Gibbs’ only transgression, he would’ve been slapped on the wrist, not kicked in the liver. So why the uproar? Why the feeling of betrayal? And just who exactly is the professional left? The term “professional left” denotes a growing industry that specializes in converting other people’s money into an ideological product, while making a good living out of it in the process. It would seem that Robert Gibbs broke the first rule of the professional left, which is (of course): you do not talk about the professional left. The second rule? See the first rule. Now that Gibbs has recklessly uttered the monster’s true name, the professional left has collectively risen from the murky depth, roaring and raving, demanding a ritualistic sacrifice in the form of the press secretary’s political corpse.

US lawmakers urge probe on Vietnam Catholic clash
http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5heBIPct7vJsyJWVesT0oz-WNuCKw
Excerpt: US lawmakers urged a UN probe into violence in a Vietnamese Catholic village after families said that authorities used deadly force to break up a religious procession. Villagers' relatives, testifying before a panel of the US Congress, charged that Vietnamese authorities forcibly prevented Con Dau parish, near the central city of Danang, from burying a woman at the local cemetery in May. Authorities, who want to move the parish and build a resort, seized the body to cremate and severely beat the villagers, including women and the elderly, the residents said. Tai Nguyen, who lives in Houston, said tearfully that police came back in July and took away his brother Nam Nguyen, a procession leader, who died two days later in custody after bruises around his body. (At the hearing, Congressman Chris Smith also brought up the plight of the Montagnards, their continued persecution, the hundreds of political prisoners, as well as the persecution of those of other faiths and political persuasions. Also conducting the hearings were Congressman Frank Wolf and Anh "Joseph" Cao. –Mike These stories keep coming up. We can hope enough pressure will embarrass Hanoi enough so they slack off on all this blatant repression and mistreatment of their citizens. --Del)

Facts Obama Doesn’t Want You to Connect
http://commonamericanjournal.com/?p=17952
Excerpt: What really happened during the 2008 elections? Recent information regarding the primary caucuses paints the picture of a campaign that would stop at nothing to win. A campaign that was willing to strong arm candidates and volunteers in order to meet its goal. The documentary We Will Not Be Silenced delves into the Obama 2008 Campaign. “We believe The Democratic National Committee (DNC) made a grave error by depriving American voters of their choice of Hillary Clinton as Democratic nominee. Senator Clinton, by all accounts, except caucuses, won the Primary Election and, therefore, should be the 2008 Democratic Nominee. That didn’t happen, due largely to illegitimate and illegal acts. We have interviews of many accounts from caucus states recounting threats, intimidation, lies, stolen documents, falsified documents, busing in voters in exchange for paying for “dinners,” etc. There are at least 2000 complaints, in Texas alone, of irregularities directed towards the Obama Campaign, that have lead to a very fractured and broken Democratic Party.”

ObamaCare: the Burden on Small Business
http://commonamericanjournal.com/?p=17940
How will ObamaCare affect a small business owner who’s married with two kids? For one thing, he and his business will pay higher health premiums beginning this year. He and his employees will have to purchase unlimited lifetime coverage and unlimited annual coverage (this requirement phases in between now and 2014). The Obama administration estimates that these mandates alone could increase premiums for some businesses by 7 percent. He and his employees will have to purchase coverage for dependent children without any waiting periods for pre-existing conditions. Another mandate will require them to purchase coverage for dependents up to age 26. One private estimate puts the cost of this “slacker” mandate an average of 2 percent, but our small-business owner’s premiums may rise even more. Perversely, the cost may force him to drop dependent coverage entirely.

Roger Clemens to be indicted on charges of making false statements
http://voices.washingtonpost.com/early-lead/2010/08/report_roger_clemens_to_be_ind.html?wpisrc=nl_natlalert
Maybe Bill Clinton will testify that perjury isn’t a big deal Excerpt: Roger Clemens will be indicted on charges of making false statements to Congress about his use of performance-enhancing drugs, two sources have told The Washington Post.

Quote
"Each State, in ratifying the Constitution, is considered as a sovereign body, independent of all others, and only to be bound by its own voluntary act. In this relation, then, the new Constitution will, if established, be a FEDERAL, and not a NATIONAL constitution."
--James Madison

How Many Slaves Do You Own
http://www.fredoneverything.net/Reparations.shtml
Political incorrect. And I think Gates is on record against reparations, noting that it was primarily blacks who sold other blacks to slave traders. I want reparations for the million whites who were kidnapped into slavery in Muslim countries, according to Thomas Sowell, who has researched slavery worldwide. He says that’s about twice as many slaves as were brought to what became the United States. Excerpt: Tell you what. I believe in justice. I’ll give you a million dollars for every slave I own, and another million for every year you were a slave. Fair enough? But tell me, how many slaves do you suppose I have? In round numbers, I mean. Say to the nearest dozen. And how long were you a slave? Oh. In other words, I owe you reparations for something that I didn’t do and didn’t happen to you….. Now, I'd view things differently if you said, "Fred, blacks can't get anywhere in a modern country without education. We know that. We need better schools, smarter teachers, harder courses, books with smaller pictures and bigger words. Can you help us?" I'd say, "Hallelujah! Hoo-ahh! Not just yes, but hell yes. Let's sell an aircraft carrier and get these folks some real schools and get them into the economic mainstream." I'd say it partly because it would be the right thing to do, and partly because I'd like to add you guys to the tax base. The current custodial state is expensive. I'd just love for blacks to study and learn to compete and stop burning places.

Look Who's 'Nativist' Now!
http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=38618
Excerpt: "Nativism in American politics has become so rampant that it is considered scandalous in Republican circles for a judge to acknowledge paying any attention to foreign courts and their legal rulings." -- New York Times editorial, Aug. 3, 2010. The New York Times runs this same smug editorial every few months -- at least I think it's the same editorial -- to vent its spleen at conservatives who object to American judges relying on foreign law to interpret the U.S. Constitution. But when it comes to anchor babies, The New York Times and the entire Democratic establishment plug their ears and hum rather than consider foreign laws on citizenship. (For more on this, see "Mexican immigration law versus U.S. immigration law.") Needless to say, America is the only developed nation that allows illegal aliens to gain full citizenship for their children merely by dropping them on U.S. soil. Take Sweden -- one of the left's favorite countries. Not only is there no birthright citizenship, but even the children of legal immigrants cannot become Swedish citizens simply by being born there. At least one parent must be a citizen for birth on Swedish soil to confer citizenship. (Applicants also have to know the lyrics to at least one ABBA song, which explains why you don't see groups of Mexicans congregating outside Ikea stores.) Liberals are constantly hectoring Americans to adopt Sweden's generous welfare policies without considering that one reason Sweden's welfare policies haven't bankrupted the country (yet) is that the Swedes don't grant citizenship to the children of any deadbeat who manages the spectacular feat of giving birth on Swedish soil.

1 comment:

  1. There's a storm coming. And it's gonna be a doozy.

    ReplyDelete