Sunday, October 24, 2010

Political Digest for October 24, 2010

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. Nor that I disagree with them, of course.

This is Great: League of Women Voters Gets Schooled by True Americans
Excerpt: At a recent debate between lefty Rep. Melissa Bean and her GOP challenger Joe Walsh, the League of Women Voters didn’t want to begin the proceedings with the Pledge of Allegiance. The audience had a different view of things…(something is brewing, people).

10 ugly comments made by 10 even uglier liberal women
These are feminists? ~Bob. Excerpt: …if Palin ever visited New York, she would be “gang-raped by my big black brothers.”

FUNNY - Mark Steyn's Comment on Change of Venue - London, Ontario
Excerpt: At the CAMERA event in Boston the other day, I met a rabbi who was hosting an event for Lars Vilks. The FBI came to see him and told him to cancel it for "security reasons". He told them (direct quote) to "go f*** yourselves". This isn't really a free speech issue so much as a question of how pathetically the multicultural left is willing to prostrate itself before Islamic intimidation. As Rand Simberg notes, the only real "Islamophobes" are the multiculti squishes who pre-capitulate for ever slenderer and more risible reasons. Still, the show must go on. Pending the next move by the Islamic supremacists, we're booked into Centennial Hall, which is a 1,400-seater. What do I have to do to fill that? Deliver an apocalyptic head-for-the-hills speech and sing "Marshmallow World" (the extended remix)? A disturbing number of readers have suggested I combine my speech with some of the livelier stunts from municipally-approved Sexapalooza. Steynapalooza? I'm not sure we can afford the rubber-suit budget, but I'll certainly consider it. London is about equally convenient (or equally inconvenient) for Toronto, Buffalo and Detroit. So, if you're a SteynOnline reader in Michigan or western New York, we'd love to see you. It'll be a rollicking night, I promise. Because, to be honest, I'm a little more pumped than I was before. So, whatever happens, I'll be there on November 1st, and neither the Islamic enforcers nor their prison wives in the City of London bureaucracy can prevent that. Make a date:

Zucker: Sorry for backing Boxer
Excerpt: Famed filmmaker David Zucker penned an apology to Big Government readers for backing Barbara Boxer in past elections for the US Senate. It turns out that the producer of films such as Airplane, Naked Gun, Top Secret!, and An American Carol once contributed to Boxer during her first campaign for Senate. For penance, Zucker offers this soon-to-be classic short, Call Me Madam Joe, that merges Boxer’s most arrogant moment with a dose of Abbott and Costello — featuring one of our favorite character actors, Clint Howard:

Blasts hit secret Iranian missile launching-pad for US, Israeli targets
I believe the Jews are not going to get in the railroad cars quietly this time, however much Europe and the left desires to reprise the 1930s. ~Bob. Excerpt: A top-secret Iranian military installation was struck by a triple blast Tues. Oct. 12 the day before Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad arrived in Lebanon. debkafile's military and intelligence sources report the site held most of the Shehab-3 medium-range missile launchers Iran had stocked for striking US forces in Iraq and Israel in the event of war - some set to deliver triple warheads (tri-conic nosecones). The 18 soldiers officially reported killed in the blasts and 14 injured belonged to the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) main missile arm, the Al-Hadid Brigades. The Imam Ali Base where the explosion occurred is situated in lofty Zagros mountain country near the town of Khorramabad in the western Iranian province of Lorestan. This site was selected for an altitude which eases precise targeting and the difficulty of reaching it for air or ground attack. It lies 400 kilometers from Baghdad and primary American bases in central Iraq and 1,250 kilometers from Tel Aviv and central Israel. Both are well within the Shehab-3 missile's 1,800-2,500-kilometer operational range. Our Iranian sources report that Tehran spent hundreds of millions to build one of the largest subterranean missile launching facilities of its kind in the Middle East or Europe. Burrowed under the Imam Ali Base is a whole network of wide tunnels deep underground. Somehow, a mysterious hand rigged three blasts in quick succession deep inside those tunnels, destroying a large number of launchers and causing enough damage to render the facility unfit for use. In its official statement on the incident, Tehran denied it was the result of "a terrorist attack" and claimed the explosion "was caused by a nearby fire that spread to the munitions storage area of the base." In the same way, the regime went to great lengths to cover up the ravages wrought to their nuclear and military control systems by the Stuxnet virus - which is still at work. In actual fact, debkafile's military sources report, Iran's missile arsenal and the Revolutionary Guards have also suffered a devastating blow. Worst of all, all their experts are a loss to account for the assailants' ability to penetrate one of Iran's most closely guarded bases and reach deep underground to blow up the missile launchers. The number of casualties is believed to be greater than the figure given out by Tehran. The soldiers' funerals took place Thursday, Oct. 14, at the same time as Ahmadinejad declared in South Lebanon that Israel was destined to "disappear." A few hours later, he ended his contentious two-day visit to Lebanon.

UK - Labour: London Borough Becomes 'Islamic Republic'
Excerpt: Mr Rahman has won as an independent – getting more than double the number of votes of the Labour candidate imposed in his place, Helal Abbas. As mayor, he will have far more power than he had as a council leader. And unlike a council leader, no-one can sack him, except the voters in four years’ time. We should be clear what this result was, and was not. It was a decisive victory. But it was not much of an endorsement by the borough’s people. Turnout, at 25.6%, was astonishingly low, with most voters (particularly the white majority, and they still are a majority) unaware of, indifferent to or turned off by the process. Lutfur’s 23,000-odd votes are only about 13 per cent of Tower Hamlets’ electorate. It was not a victory for any sort of democracy. It was the execution of a careful and sophisticated plan by a small, well-financed and highly-organised cabal to seize control of a London borough. It deployed not just volunteers from the IFE and other bodies but also people paid to campaign by Lutfur’s business backers. Someone also paid for tens, perhaps hundreds of thousands of copies of the most pernicious literature ever seen in a British election, in which Mr Abbas was falsely smeared as a wife-beater, a bankrupt, a racist and an insulter of Islam. Yet even this would probably not have worked without a series of astonishing unforced errors by the Labour Party. Something else this was not, or not really, was Lutfur’s win; it was Labour’s own goal. For the last nine years, there have been deep concerns about IFE and other infiltration, and membership fraud generally, in Tower Hamlets (the Bethnal Green and Bow constituency Labour party more than doubled in size between 2006 and 2008, at a time when Labour membership nationally was sharply falling. Many of the new members have the same names as people we can link to the IFE.) As a result, Tower Hamlets Labour members are not allowed to select their councillor candidates: it is done centrally, by the London regional office. Yet this safeguard was torn up for the far more important mayoral selection, despite the warnings on this blog and elsewhere that Lutfur’s vote bank would see him selected, as indeed he was.

David Horowitz: Schrecker and Me at Brandeis
Excerpt: I spoke last night a Brandeis University, as usual under the auspices of College Republicans and with no institutional or faculty sponsorship. As fate would have it, there were two other events with speakers that evening, one an anti-Israel activist named Hedy Epstein, who was sponsored by the Peace, Conflict Resolution and Co-existence Department, and the other a radical professor from Yeshiva University, named Ellen Schrecker. Schrecker, who in the past has gone out of her way to attack me for objecting to the injection of political agendas into academic classrooms, was speaking about her new book, The Lost Soul of Higher Education, which is a defense of indoctrination (the “lost soul” in the title refers to the alleged “corporatization” of the university and its interests). While my talk was a faculty orphan, Schrecker’s was sponsored by the following Brandeis departments: Education, History, Women’s and Gender Studies, Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education, Sociology, Anthropology, English, Legal Studies and Journalism...For nearly a decade it has been my claim, which I have documented in four books -- The Professors, Indoctrination U., One Party Classroom and the recently published Reforming Our Universities -- that entire academic fields, newly created in the post-1960s era, are not in fact academic but are political parties, now entrenched in our universities, whose mission is the indoctrination and recruitment of students to leftwing political agendas. I have identified these fields as Women’s Studies, African American Studies, Peace Studies, Cultural Studies, Post-Colonial Studies, and similar inter-disciplinary subjects, and have deplored how they have spread their malign influence into other academic areas including all the Brandeis departments that chose to sponsor Schrecker’s talk and withhold support from mine. And here is how Ellen Schrecker in her book describes the creation of the two new academic fields that pioneered the debasement of the university curriculum: “What women’s studies did have in common with African American studies, however, was its connection to a major social movement. The field grew directly out of second-wave feminism; it was, one scholar noted, ‘the educational arm of the women’s liberation movement.’ As such, it had a strong political agenda, one that was readily embraced by its early practitioners, former New Left activists who viewed their teaching and research as part of the broader feminist struggle against the patriarchal oppression of women. ‘From the beginning,’ historian Marilyn Boxer explained, ‘the goal of women’s studies was not merely to study women’s position in the world but to change it.’ There was thus a ‘continuing commitment …. to advocacy – that is to political action….” This, in a nutshell, is the Orwellian universe we now inhabit, where totalitarians and character assassins are referred to as “liberals” and where defenders of political indoctrination sit on academic freedom committees and call their critics “McCarthyites.” (Great quote, I forget by whom: “If your kid is majoring in something that ends in ‘studies,’ don’t turn his bedroom into a den just yet. That one is coming home.” ~Bob.)

Riding Shotgun with the Border Patrol
Excerpt: I took a trip to the San Diego Sector Border Patrol for a ride along at America’s Southern border. What I learned and saw is documented in this article. Drug cartels and immigrant smugglers plague the southern border of the United States; but those who might plan or carry out terrorist attacks on the U.S. may also be infiltrating our country through our borders and our coastline as well. The U.S. Border Patrol has been stepping up their efforts to secure the border; however, hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens still manage to slip through each year. Many new threats are appearing such as tunnels and maritime incursions. Even with added infrastructure, technology and personnel along the southern border, smugglers have found ways to continue their careers while successfully threatening our national security. Hundreds of patches where fencing has been cut through showed that even fences don’t stop border crossers anymore. In fiscal year 2009 the United States Border Patrol apprehended about 556,000 illegal aliens - roughly 1,500 a day. And those are only the one's who were caught. “Official Border Patrol statistics are that 1 in 5 illegal aliens are apprehended and arrested,” according to Of the nine sectors in the Southwestern U.S., the San Diego Sector Border Patrol had the second highest apprehensions of illegal border crossers in 2009, second only to the Tucson Sector in Arizona. San Diego used to be responsible for half of all the apprehensions in the U.S., which is now the case in the Tucson Sector. “Our numbers have decreased dramatically. This year down 42 percent, whereas other areas have risen over the years and now Tucson Sector leads the nation in the number of apprehensions per year,” said Officer Michael Jimenez of the San Diego Border Patrol. In fact, so far in fiscal year 2010, the numbers of those arrested in San Diego have fallen by about 54,000 illegal aliens. Still 64,500 have been apprehended this fiscal year, and there’s still another month to go. Tucson saw a drop of 38,000 apprehensions, but still had 203,000 arrests in fiscal year 2010 so far.

Obama Follows the Euro Model--off a cliff?
Excerpt: As of this writing, France is paralyzed. By the time you read this, it might be in flames. In Britain, where politics is more polite but the problems are perhaps just as dire, the government is proposing budget cuts on a scale not seen for nearly a century. In Greece, well, the less said about Greece the better. All of these countries — and many more — are going through painful retrenchments because they spent too much money, made too many promises, and expected too little from their citizens. The era of European austerity is upon us, because the Europeans — or at least those in charge — understand the mess they’ve made of their economies. This should present a real problem for Barack Obama and the vast (though shrinking) chorus of experts, editorialists, and activists who support his agenda. In broad terms, all of the policies Obama and the Democrats have pushed are the sorts of policies the British, the French, and other Europeans had for years, even decades. As far as I am aware, no one has asked President Obama a simple question: If your philosophy is so great, how come the countries that have embraced it for generations are so much poorer than we are?

Obama, seeking lost magic, crosses country campaigning for Democrats -- and himself
Excerpt: Obama remembers how good it used to be to be Barack Obama. He only wishes everyone else would remember, too.

Amid anger, regret over Williams's firing, NPR staffers fear financial backlash
Gee, why not borrow money from China my granddaughter will have to pay, to fund political positions I disagree with? ~Bob. Excerpt: NPR faced fierce public and political reaction - most of it strongly negative - in the wake of its firing of commentator Juan Williams for comments he made on a Fox News program earlier in the week. Even NPR's own staff expressed exasperation at the decision during a meeting Friday with NPR's president, Vivian Schiller. Several of those who attended said Schiller told employees that she regretted how she handled the episode. The most serious issue facing NPR may be whether Williams's firing will cause lasting damage to public broadcasting's finances. Many conservative lawmakers and politicians - including House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.), Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and former House speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) - have called on Congress to curtail or eliminate federal subsidies for public broadcasting. The threat of a funding cutoff is an old one among conservatives, who have long characterized NPR as a bastion of liberal bias. But some at NPR and in public broadcasting worry about the timing of the calls this time. The Williams controversy broke less than two weeks before a midterm election that may restore Republican control of the House and Senate. While NPR receives only about 2 percent of its $154 million annual budget from federal sources, including the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and National Endowment for the Arts, its 800-plus member stations are much more reliant on tax subsidies. Some smaller stations receive as much as a third of their operating revenue from federal sources.

BREAKING: Judges in Geert Wilders’ Free Speech Case Removed from Trial (UPDATED)
Excerpt: In the conclusion to a bizarre trial — in which the prosecution already called for the acquittal of the defendant — Wilders’ lawyer Abraham Moszkowicz today asked for dismissal of the three judges, and his request was approved by the dismissal commission of the court. Now, the trial will have to start over from the beginning. Moszkowicz asked for a dismissal after the three judges refused to allow Dr. Hans Jansen to testify regarding a discussion he had with one of the judges of a higher court that ordered the prosecution of Wilders. In May, Dr. Jansen was invited to attend a dinner party together with one of the higher court judges. This judge started discussing the Wilders trial, and his order to prosecute, with Dr. Jansen. Jansen revealed this on his personal blog last Wednesday. Moszkowicz wanted the judges to hear, in court, Dr. Jansen’s impression of this discussion. Dr. Jansen had testified earlier in this case in a closed setting. Dr. Jansen is one of the foremost Islam experts in the Netherlands. (As is the case in the U.S., judges are not permitted to discuss a case outside the court — especially with an expert witness for the case.) The court refused Moszkowicz’ request to hear Dr. Jansen. Moszkowicz subsequently asked for dismissal of this court, and after a short session the dismissal commission agreed with him. Now the trial has been postponed for several months and the news of the activist judge of the higher court has captured today’s headlines in the Netherlands. (I know you've been watching this case with interest. It sounds like a circus. There are 2 updates at the end. –Ron P. )

Election Fraud Uncovered by Patriotic Citizens … Who Promptly Get Sued
Excerpt: Talk about denial! A group of liberal activists is making the media rounds, assuring reporters and editors that election fraud is a fairy tale. Nothing serious, they assert, nothing to see here. Too bad for them that citizens in Houston, energized by the Tea Party movement, have formed a group called True the Vote. Their hard work has demonstrated that, in some parts of the country at least, our election system is still infested with problems. True the Vote is composed entirely of volunteers — hundreds of them. They have pored over election records in Harris County, Texas, looking for signs of fraud. And they have found plenty. Indeed, their initial research into only a very small portion of the voter registration records has led them to ask the U.S. Justice Department’s Voting Section to conduct a federal investigation. In a letter asking for an official inquiry, True the Vote discusses potential widespread forgery in voter application forms. For instance, it seems from the applications that someone suspiciously signs the letter “J” with a quirky “3” inside the loop. The “3” shows up in multiple signatures for different voters with the names Jenard, Jamark, Jamarcus, and Jones. True the Vote reports that at least four noncitizens have been registered to vote in Harris County. The group provided Justice with the actual voter registration forms where applicants marked “NO” to the question: “Are you a U.S. Citizen?” The group also provided the voter registration numbers of these confessed noncitizens. Yes, astonishingly, Harris County registered them to vote anyway. They are now on the rolls and able to participate in the upcoming midterm elections. (...) This sort of thing can happen only when election officials flout Section 8 of the National Voter Registration Act, which requires them to clean up their voter registration lists. But this Department of Justice seems to have no interest in enforcing these laws. In testimony before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, DOJ whistleblowers Christopher Coates and J. Christian Adams revealed that Obama Justice Department political appointee Julie Fernandes instructed the Voting Section that no such cases were to be brought. That directive gives free rein to voter registration fraud. Bogus registrants can now cast a fraudulent vote with confidence that the election police are asleep. For years, the far left has insisted that voter fraud really doesn’t exist, or at least that claims about it are overblown. In so doing, the left has willfully blinded itself to the truth. But the arrival of True the Vote is helping expose the lies of these election fraud deniers. (...) Of course, this may explain why True the Vote has been hit with a lawsuit by the Texas Democratic Party, an ethics complaint by Texans for Public Justice, and another lawsuit (for defamation) by Houston Votes and the Houston lawyer behind the voter registration drive that turned in multiple problematic registration forms (Harris County estimated over 7,000). That same organization has also sued Harris County — claiming the county is barred from correcting the voter registration problems! So has the Eric Holder-run Justice Department acted on the evidence of electoral fraud gift-wrapped, tied in a bow, and delivered to them? No. He and his partisan retinue in the Civil Rights Division have instead reportedly opened up an investigation of True the Vote!

SEIU Offshoot ‘Mi Familia Vota’ Caught With 6,000 Bogus Colorado Voter Registrations
Excerpt: Do you remember when Barack Obama said: “The SEIU Agenda Is My Agenda”?
Now we know why. The same SEIU offshoot group that is accused of turning in thousands of bogus voter registrations in Arizona has come under fire in Colorado.

Are Europe and America Trading Places?
Excerpt: These days, one is more likely to hear the praises of America from the lips of Europeans, while many of our own public officials seem embarrassed to espouse our own American values. Are there shifting political winds across the Atlantic? Perhaps. See if you can attribute the following statements to the correct political figure:

How the Constitution is Read
Excerpt: The Tea Party Movement is not populated by the dim-witted, as the media would have one believe. The founders and organizers, like Loesch, have done the hard work of educating themselves on the Constitution. They have brought in Constitutional scholars to "brief" their organizations. The mainstream American might be surprised to find how many Constitutional scholars actually agree with the Tea Partiers It is not for a lack of understanding that this question is brewing; it is actually a conflict of visions on how to give a full reading of the document.

Forty Million Losers
Excerpt: Given free rein, the leftists who dominate the unions would bring the French economy to its knees. Saddled with similar levels of debt, Britain's Conservative government has proposed bold measures to cut spending by $127 billion over four years. Cutting the expenditure of government by 20% is a serious response to Britain's debt problems. If successful, it will restore the sort of credibility that will enable future growth in the economy. Meanwhile, Germany has moved to raise its retirement age to 67, a measure that makes the French look like a nation not just of losers, but of slackers as well. With no reform of its pension scheme and other worker benefits, France will become less and less globally competitive. As in America, France's retirement system faces ever-increasing deficits as fewer workers support ever larger numbers of retirees. Without reform, including an increase in the retirement age, future deficits (currently nearly $45 billion annually) will surely increase. The unions' answer to this deficit situation is to raise taxes on businesses, thus making them even less competitive, and to raise taxes on the public as well. Raising taxes would be devastating for companies and individuals who already pay some of the highest tax rates in the world. Another alternative, doing nothing (the California plan), would be equally destructive. For one thing, it would undermine global confidence in the French economy, creating a situation similar to that in Greece. A potential lowering of the French credit rating would lead to higher borrowing costs and thus less funding available for pensions and for everything else. It would also put pressure on the euro and on France's relations with its more provident neighbor, Germany. Finally, it would add to inflation, a stealth tax that affects everyone.

GOP Victory May Be Defeat For Climate Change Policy
Excerpt: The more carbon that gets released into the atmosphere, the higher the average temperature rises. That's a scientific fact. Human activities, such as driving, flying, building and even turning on the lights, are the biggest contributor to the release of carbon. That too, is a fact. And yet the majority of Republicans running for House and Senate seats this year disagree. Ken Buck, the GOP senate candidate in Colorado admits he's a climate change denier. Ron Johnson, who leads in the polls of Wisconsin's senatorial race, has said that "it is far more likely that [climate change] is just sunspot activity or something just in the geologic eons of time where we have changes in the climate." And when Christine O'Donnell, the Republican candidate for Senate in Delaware, was asked whether human activity contributes to global warming, she said, "I don't have an opinion on that." Conservatives in Congress are turning against the science behind climate change. That means if Republicans take control this November, there's little hope for climate change policy. (While hours could be spent arguing their two "scientific points" and whether or not those points apply, it would be fruitless to do so. Instead, first, please notice this link is to the official NPR website. Second, notice this is a transcript that was read on air (also notice who gets credit for writing it). Now, two questions. First, why is the so-called non-partisan public radio corporation taking sides on a political issue? Second, why is the public treasury paying for what is not only open advocacy of a position, but partisan in its intent, nature, and effect? If this was done by a private business using private funds, I'd have no objection. But, by any poll, a large number of their involuntary contributors are at least sympathetic toward the party being attacked. Only an idiot would do this--especially the week after Juan Williams' firing--and still expect to be pampered and showered with cash. Either they expect to be cut off from funding and are desperately getting in every hit they can before the cash runs out, or they are far stupider than I ever thought. They had to know this would come to our attention. Defund them. Keep it very low key, simply omit them from the final version of the bill(s). And, we probably ought to consider revoking their charter, too. Ron P.)

Spy Smasher! Where Are You Now?
Excerpt: The motive of the Uncle Screwtape and the Lowerarchy, which is, after all, the mastermind of all such self-destructive nonsense, is death. The members of the Cult of PC do not wish to die, for they are cowards, but they also lack the intellectual agility to perceive that their actions summon rather than repel danger. They think the Dane will depart in peace if we merely pay the spiritual version of a danegeld, because the Dane are too potent to face. At the same time and in the same sense (paradoxes do not trouble the Cultists: there are the Mysteries of their religion) America is far too potent to be defeated, or even threatened, by any oil-rich and international and numberless foe which springs from a tradition of Holy War over a thousand years old, because — ah, I do not know why the Cultists think America is invulnerable, and I cannot imagine or invent an idea, even for the purpose of satire. There are some things sane men cannot think. In either case, they think the George Bush or Talk Radio is a bigger threat to world peace than the Jihad.

45-Car Convoy, 700 Hotel Rooms, 2 Jumbo Jets For Obamas' Mumbai Trip
You know how the rule is that broken cookies have no calories, because they fell out? When liberals do it, the rule is it has no carbon footprint—they only worry about that for lesser mortals—and no deficit implications. ~Bob. Excerpt: The entire Taj Mahal hotel has been booked, the President's team will have 570 rooms, including all banquets and restaurants, 125 rooms more rooms for Obama's security, the 2 jumbo jets are in addition to Air Force One...

Founder of Ultrareach: Let's Work Together to Overcome China's Internet Blockade
Excerpt: Huang and his partners will accompany the netizens in China to walk through this unforgettable phase of history. The new electronic age makes information technologies easily accessible to the public. The internet has become an important means of communication the world over. The accessibility of online news and its fast flow, scare dictatorial regimes like the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). To block people from getting online information, the CCP invests huge amounts of money and resources. Their efforts began way back in 1999 with an investment of $8 billion dollars for the first phase of the Gold Shield firewall project. Because a blockade always sparks off an anti-blockade, with the support and cooperation from mainland Chinese an anti-blockade software known as the "Five Swordsmen" was able to be developed. Our reporter had an interview with one of the "swordsmen", the founder of Ultrareach, Silicon engineer, Alan Huang. Mr. Huang spoke about his anti- blockade breakthrough research and development.

An Easy Weapon--"the Overseas anti-China Forces"
Excerpt: The people of China have been influenced for years to harbor ill will towards the concept of “Overseas Anti-China Forces.” Many Chinese citizens become upset or alarmed when the phrase is mentioned but few remember the actual reason for their distaste of the idea. Writers in China have recently discussed online. On October 13th an article discussing the issue was posted by popular blogger Yan Changhai on Netease. The posting was deleted 90 minutes after its posting. The article by Changhai highlighted the reason for the Chinese Communist Party’s creation of the term “Overseas Anti –China Forces.” Traditionally the Chinese people have not held any animosity towards the rest of the world. In the beginning of the 5,000 years of the country’s history the Chinese people were originally peaceful people. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP)developed the “Overseas Anti-China Forces” to keep the people of China from accepting ideas that are popular in the West, such as the freedom of speech and the freedom of religion. In the article Changhai discussed how China used money from the Chinese populace to secure trade agreements with small surrounding islands. The efforts that began in 1949 were meant to gain the upper hand in global business affairs and have been largely successful. In March of this year the CCP showed its true colors during the incident with North Korea. After the altercation the CCP increased its push of the political term “Overseas Anti-China Forces” in its national propaganda postings. Another popular Chinese blog writer Liang Jing recently wrote about China’s threat to the global economy. Jing also pointed out the CCP’s continuation to build a massive military force while continuing to engaged in questionable finance juggling that is similar to gambling. The risks taken by the CCP could be a danger for the world at large. Many people around the world are beginning to have a negative view of the CCP. Writer Yang Hengjun posted a blog describing his view on the world community changing its view on the CCP due to the regime’s questionable methods in governing the people. The CCP has also shown dishonest methods of governing China’s cash diplomacy. Yang believes that more people are seeing the lack of morals and lack of human rights protection in the nation. (Not so sure about that “Traditionally the Chinese people have not held any animosity towards the rest of the world” part. Have had some Asian history—at one time I could recite the dynasties of China in order, but it not being very marketable as a skill, I let it lapse. Seems to me that subjects of the Middle Kingdom always viewed non-Chinese as Barbarians, and were as willing to conquer and rule their neighbors, as Europe was to colonize China. ~Bob.)

Hezbollah's Progress: How the Party of God became Lebanon's Most Powerful Faction
Within my lifetime, Lebanon was a Christian-majority country. Given that Muslims conquered every Christian, Jewish and other lands they came in contact with, and built mosques on the subjugated people’s holy places, it makes their constant whining about the crusades ingenious at best. ~Bob.)Writing from southern Lebanon in the mid-to-late 1970s, during the continuing war of attrition between Israel and the PLO and at a time when the country's long-relegated Shiite minority was just beginning to get itself organized, I noticed the presence of an almost unremarked token force of Iranian troops. These had been dispatched by the Shah of Iran, who (as we tend to forget) was ever-mindful of his title Shadow of God and of his anointed role as protector of the Shiites. Commenting more presciently than I knew, I said that these soldiers would probably be needed back home before too long to safeguard the peacock throne. At that time, it would have been entirely impossible to picture any Iranian head of state visiting multicultural Lebanon as a plenipotentiary and being feted all the way to within yelling distance of the Israeli border. Yet last week President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad managed this feat almost without effort. A man who has managed to escape serious inconvenience for his illegal pursuit of nuclear weapons and who has pitilessly repressed and cheated his own people can appear on neutral soil as the patron of the Party of God because his regime shares that party's pitiless attitude toward the state of Israel and its biting contempt for all the Arab and Muslim "moderates" who would even consider a compromise with it. In a way, an even more dramatic measure of the progress of Hezbollah and its patrons involves a comparison with only a few years ago. In February 2005, former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri was blown to shreds in broad daylight, his murder capping a series of assassinations of politicians and journalists who had been critical of the Syrian presence in their country. So immense was the democratic popular revulsion against this criminality that Damascus was compelled to withdraw its occupying forces, and an international tribunal was convened to investigate the complicity of the Syrian Baathists, and by implication their holy Hezbollah proxy, and in turn that proxy's other supporter in Tehran. Aided, in my opinion, by the momentum created by the fall of Saddam Hussein, and encouraged even by French support for the relevant U.N. resolutions, the local prestige of the United States became very high. Now mark the sequel.

Senate Race Rankings
With less than two weeks to go before Election Day, Democrats believe their chances are getting better in a number of key states. That's not a proposition with which the GOP disagrees, but Republicans still think they're set for a good night. The Senate landscape remains far more volatile than the House playing field, though, and the range in which GOP gains could fall is much wider than most observers say. Make no mistake, with a fortnight to go, 10 states are still in serious play.

Ground Zero Mosque
Excerpt: Two sets of fallacies have dominated the mainstream debate about the Ground Zero mosque—and before we go any further, let’s get this straight: it is a mosque, frantic insistence by the Quisling elite to use one euphemistic misnomer or another notwithstanding. This means it is not merely a place of worship, but also a physical expression of the Mohammedan stake to a place at first, and eventually a symbol of Jihad’s triumph over the hated infidel—crudely visible in the prison bars of St. John’s Cathedral in Damascus and Hagia Sophia in Constantinople. The gall of the project’s promoters is evident in its name, “Cordoba House,” which is not inspired by that old canard, the “Golden Age.” The mosque in Cordoba was built after the Muslim conquest of southern Spain. The invaders razed the Church of St. Vincent to erect their triumphal monument. And now a second Cordoba Mosque, right next to the scene of jihadist carnage, is meant to signify “bridge-building” and “interfaith dialogue.” Such idiocies are only possible in a society seriously, perhaps terminally diseased. Most of those Americans who oppose this monstrosity do not deny the supposed right of the Mohammedans to go ahead with the project, but merely bemoan their insensitivity in insisting on the full exercise of that alleged “right,” and worry about the effect it will have on inter-communal relations. Those who support it—the current occupant of the White House and the controllers of the media and the academe—assert the claims of religious freedom, antidiscriminationism, human rights, tolerance, respect, and of course Islam’s peaceful benevolence. Both sides fail to grasp that the First Amendment to the Constitution of 1787 does not provide an abstract and absolute “freedom of religion.” The purpose of the First Amendment was to prevent the imposition of a centrally established denomination on the states, some of which had established churches of their own and all of which assumed “religion” to mean Christianity of some kind or another. The real issue, and the real debate we have not had thus far, is about the nature of Islam and about the deformity of the post-Christian pluralist society that postulates an absolute right of anyone to believe in anything, and to act accordingly. If Ground -Zero Mosque is built, we’ll know that this society is heading for swift self-destruction…I am not going to waste your time tonight with yet another treatise on why Islam is not the Religion of Peace, Tolerance, Compassion, etc, etc. We are beyond that. Among reasonable people, the real score on Muhammad and his followers is well known. It has been known for centuries. That score, however, no matter how calmly stated and comprehensively supported, invariably elicits the howls of “Islamophobia” from the neoliberal elite class. Let us therefore look at the formal, legally tested definition of that word, the latest addition to the arsenal of postmodern “phobias.” It is provided by the European Agency for Fundamental Rights based in Vienna. It diligently tracks the instances of “Islamophobia” all over the Old Continent, which it defines by eight red flags:

Pew Poll: Tsunami Warning for Democrats
Excerpt: Democrats are facing an electoral landscape more inhospitable than anyone could have imagined just months ago, according to new survey data from the Pew Research Center. The Pew Research Center survey released Thursday found many troubling signs for Democrats. Among them, Republicans now hold significant advantages among both men and women, as well as in the 77 most competitive House districts. First, the toplines. Among likely voters, Republicans have a 10 point advantage on the generic ballot test -- 50 percent to 40 percent - up from a seven-point edge last month. If the Democratic base is coming home, the Republican base is intensifying further. Among independent voters, Republicans also have a significant advantage. They are breaking for the GOP by a 19-point margin, 49 percent to 30 percent. Drilling down into the districts where the battle for the House is being contested, things get worse for Democrats. In the 77 most competitive House districts, Republicans hold a 12 point advantage among likely voters -- 51 percent to 39 percent. These numbers indicate that prediction of a major Republican landslide - greater than the GOP's gains in the 1994 elections are a very real possibility. The Pew numbers from "safe" Democratic-held districts are also alarming for the majority party, with Democrats holding just a 51 to 41 percent lead. In safe Republican districts, the GOP enjoys a wide 58 percent to 31 percent advantage. Demographically, men are breaking for the GOP, 52 percent to 37 percent, and women prefer Republicans by a six-point margin on the generic ballot -- 49 percent to 43 percent. But there isn't a gender gap among white voters, with white men favoring the GOP by a 23-point margin, and white women by a 20-point margin. The poll also found that Democrats are beginning to tune in to the election, but not nearly enough to counteract the GOP intensity. In particular, more than a quarter -- 27 percent -- say they plan to vote plan to vote before Election Day. The Pew survey was conducted October 13 to 18 and surveyed 1,797 registered voters, including 1,354 likely voters. It had a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percent.

A First: Gay group runs ad against Democratic candidates
Excerpt: GOProud, a group that represents gay conservatives, is going where no gay organization has gone before: It’s running a campaign ad against a Democratic candidate. The Washington-based group is going after Democratic incumbents Barney Frank of Massachusetts and Barbara Boxer and Nancy Pelosi of California, calling them “catty” and “arrogant.” The spot plays off of the television show “Real Housewives of D.C.” with a new take, “The Real Democrats of Washington, D.C.” “If you thought the housewives were dysfunctional, wait until you meet the Real Democrats of Washington, D.C.,” a voice declares while pictures of the three candidates pop up in front of a pink background. The ad lets the politicians do most of the talking, pulling audio recordings from their less than amiable moments. The list includes the time Frank (justifiably) told a woman at a town hall meeting that talking to her was like “trying to argue with a dining room table” and when Boxer scolded an officer in the U.S. Army for not referring to her as “Senator Boxer” during a hearing. The group became known for shaking things up within the gay community in September when they invited conservative pundit Ann Coulter to headline an event in New York City. “For the first time ever a national gay organization is airing a television advertising campaign going after Democrats,” said Jimmy LaSalvia, GOProud’s executive director. Christopher Barron, the group’s chairman, added that he sees Frank as an “embarrassment to the gay community.” The 30-second spot will air in California, Massachusetts, Hawaii and New York starting on Monday.

More Than the Channel Divides Britain and France
Excerpt: Faced with the prospect of a longer working life until a minimum retirement age of 62 (up from the current 60), a million French citizens took to the streets, as strikers closed refineries and blockaded fuel depots, leaving motorists to fume in line for gasoline and diesel. But, confronting government measures promising not only a longer working life but 19 percent cuts in public spending, the loss of almost half a million public-sector jobs, steep reductions in welfare payments and five bleak years of austerity, the British barely seemed to blink. That, of course, may change, as it did in the late 1970s when a previous generation of Britons struggled through the so-called winter of discontent. Strikes then were so widespread that garbage piled up outside homes, cemetery operators considered mass burials at sea (the gravediggers had downed shovels) and dark thoughts gathered in British hearts. But since those days, a legacy of labor unions weakened by the Conservative Margaret Thatcher has dampened the appetite for the collective struggle still cherished in France. “French people tend to like to demonstrate,” the French finance minister, Christine Lagarde, said when asked to compare French and British national reflexes. Taking to the streets, some argue, is a rite of passage for the young and, for the older, a right at the heart of the French way of democracy since the toppling of the aristocracy in 1789. “What’s at stake here is not the retirement age, or jobs for students, but the very nature of power in this country,” said Lucy Wadham, a British novelist and blogger living in France. But that is not to say that the latest unrest is hewn from the same political flagstones as the revolutionary barricades of 1968 that defined an era: It is a cents-and-euros struggle to avert the inevitable moment when decades of cumulative benefits — from short work weeks to long vacations, from state health care to early retirement — begin to unravel. As la retraite — retirement — so the nation. “France’s problem is that, for too long, the economy has been run as a kind of job club for French workers,” said an editorial in The Spectator, a conservative British magazine. “Britain and France believe in liberty, but have different definitions of it.” While the British believe in “liberty from government,” the editorial said, the French “still like the big state and squeal at the prospect of being removed from its teat.”

Wiki-Leaks Founder on the Run, Trailed by Notoriety
Where is Matt Helm now that we need him? ~Bob. Excerpt: Julian Assange moves like a hunted man. In a noisy Ethiopian restaurant in London’s rundown Paddington district, he pitches his voice barely above a whisper to foil the Western intelligence agencies he fears. He demands that his dwindling number of loyalists use expensive encrypted cellphones and swaps his own as other men change shirts. He checks into hotels under false names, dyes his hair, sleeps on sofas and floors, and uses cash instead of credit cards, often borrowed from friends. “By being determined to be on this path, and not to compromise, I’ve wound up in an extraordinary situation,” Mr. Assange said over lunch last Sunday, when he arrived sporting a woolen beanie and a wispy stubble and trailing a youthful entourage that included a filmmaker assigned to document any unpleasant surprises. In his remarkable journey to notoriety, Mr. Assange, founder of the WikiLeaks whistle-blowers’ Web site, sees the next few weeks as his most hazardous. Now he is making his most brazen disclosure yet: 391,832 secret documents on the Iraqi war. He held a news conference in London on Saturday, saying that the release “constituted the most comprehensive and detailed account of any war ever to have entered the public record.” Twelve weeks ago, he posted on his organization’s Web site some 77,000 classified Pentagon documents on the Afghan conflict. Much has changed since 2006, when Mr. Assange, a 39-year-old Australian, used years of computer hacking and what friends call a near genius I.Q. to establish WikiLeaks, redefining whistle-blowing by gathering secrets in bulk, storing them beyond the reach of governments and others determined to retrieve them, then releasing them instantly, and globally. Now it is not just governments that denounce him: some of his own comrades are abandoning him for what they see as erratic and imperious behavior, and a nearly delusional grandeur unmatched by an awareness that the digital secrets he reveals can have a price in flesh and blood.

Union Fires Worker For Wearing USS George H W Bush Shirt While Setting up Obama Rally Staging…
Maybe he can get a job with NPR? Nah. ~Bob. Excerpt: A stage worker setting up the stage was fired for refusing to remove his hat and turn his sweatshirt inside out and the reason? The shirt hat and shirt both had the name “Bush” printed on them but not just any Bush but, that of George H.W. Bush. The IATSE (Local 33) union fired the worker even after he explained the shirt to his bosses. The shirt didn’t explicitly support George H.W Bush but that of the aircraft carrier named after the former President and the aircraft carrier his son has served on for the past many years and is currently deployed. The union worker was interviewed on KTLA Channel 5 locally in Los Angeles.

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