Thursday, November 24, 2011

Political Digest for Thanksgiving, 2011

A Happy Holiday to you and yours. Despite all our problems, we who were born in America have much to be thankful for. I will likely be off line through the weekend, with few, if any posts.

My Thanksgiving Prayer, if you missed it
Feel free to share.

Charities I support

The Top Five Reasons To Be a Commie Pinko
Too funny. ~Bob. Excerpt: Communism gets a bad rap, what with the 80 million or so murders, give or take 10 million, perpetrated by Communists worldwide. But hey, it’s for the greater good, don’t-ya-know. In spite of its gruesome history, Communist ideology is still going strong in American culture. That’s because there are compelling reasons to be a Communist that overshadow most people’s fear of being dragged out of their home in the middle of the night for no reason, put in a work camp that will likely kill them, or having to boil their children in pots and eat them just to survive. Pshaw! That will never happen here! Here are the top 5 reasons it’s good to be a Commie.

Worth reading: Failure or Success? By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Many people are lamenting the failure of the Congressional "Super Committee" to come up with an agreement on ways to reduce the runaway federal deficits. But you cannot judge success or failure without knowing what the goal was. If you think the goal was to solve the country's fiscal crisis, then obviously the Super Committee was a complete failure. But, if you think the goal was to improve the chances of the Obama administration being re-elected in 2012, it was a complete success.

New Trove of Stolen E-Mails From Climate Scientists Is Released
Excerpt: The new e-mails appeared remarkably similar to the ones released two years ago just ahead of a similar conference in Copenhagen. They involved the same scientists and many of the same issues, and some of them carried a similar tone: catty remarks by the scientists, often about papers written by others in the field. (…) The University of East Anglia, the British institution at the middle of the previous hacking episode, confirmed that at least some of the newly released e-mails were authentic. The cache released in 2009 appeared to have come from a file someone obtained by hacking into the university’s computers, a crime for which no charges have been filed or suspects named. (…) A string of investigations following the 2009 release all came to the conclusion that scientists had not manipulated data to support their findings, though some of the reports did criticize them on minor points, such as failing to share their data or to respond properly to freedom of information requests. (Two years ago when the first Climategate release broke, NYT had been given advance (at least 3 weeks) notice and copies of some emails. They chose to sit on the story. Only after the story was already roaring in the media for weeks did they sniff haughtily and condescend to mention it in their pages.  This time they are quicker to get into print (perhaps their egos have been stung by not getting advance word this time?), but they still sing the same melody. When someone releases documents they like, the releaser is a “whistleblower,” but if they dislike what the release contains, the releaser becomes a “hacker.” Notice no “hacking” charges have been filed against anyone anywhere in the world. The “string of investigations” the NYT refers to in the excerpt was roundly criticized by many as a series of insider-driven whitewashes. Failure to provide enough data to replicate an experiment’s result used to be considered sufficient reason to reject scientific papers from publication. Finally, “failing to respond properly to FOIA requests” isn’t minor, it is a CRIME in both the USA and UK. Indeed, the Virginia AG is currently suing both UVa and Dr. Mann for emails that show how the state’s funds had been used. The most important thing these new emails show is that the first Climategate group of emails wasn’t just a bunch of cherry-picked stuff taken out of context and distorted by evil deniers, but the way these people really thought, talked, and acted routinely. Ron P. The Times is not a news outlet; it is a propaganda arm of the progressive/statist movement. ~Bob.)

Terror Suspect Was White House Guest and Recipient of $500k in Taxpayer Funds
Last Friday FBI agents raided the homes of far left activists in Chicago and Minneapolis who are linked to the Marxist FARC terrorists and Islamic radicals as part of a terrorism investigation. The home of radical Hatem Abudayyeh in Chicago was raided in the terror sweep. … In 2003 Barack Obama was an honored guest at a dinner sponsored by the AAAN for former PLO-operative Rashid Khalidi. During the dinner a video was taken that shows Barack Obama celebrating with members of this Palestinian group who are openly hostile towards Israel. Barack Obama even gave a toast to a Rashid Khalidi at this going away party. The LA Times will not release the video from this Jew-bashing dinner. (If the government was withholding a video the LA Times wanted, they’d be screaming about transparency and “The Public’s right to Know.” ~Bob.)

Newt calls for ‘humane’ immigration policy
Excerpt: As he starts to lead in primary polls, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) appears to be looking ahead to the general election. In CNN’s national security debate, he called for a “humane” immigration policy.

CNN Republican debate: Winners and losers
Excerpt: Another day, another Republican presidential debate. We live-blogged the whole thing but also took note of a few of the night’s winners and, yes, losers.

Dem strategist accuses Romney of invoking Rev. Wright in new ad
Excerpt: Democratic strategist Tad Devine, an adviser to Al Gore and John Kerry's presidential campaigns, accused Mitt Romney's campaign of invoking controversial pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright in a recent ad. Devine said Wednesday that he was "shocked" to see what he believed to be imagery of an African American church in an ad released Tuesday by Romney's presidential team and airing in New Hampshire. The ad, Romney's first of the campaign, is "clearly an attempt to bring back Rev. Wright and race," Devine tweeted. (Terribly racist to mention that Obama went to a church that preached racism and anti-Americanism for 20 years, but never heard a word of “God damn America.” ~Bob.)

Comment on: Obama heckled by protesters at New Hampshire speech
Do you really think the Secret Service would've allowed the "protestors/hecklers" in if they weren't expected? And welcome? I might believe they could break in on any of the Republicans as none are in office as President, but not on Obama, the sitting President. For an announced Presidential visit, I expect the public had to have tickets or passes to get into the building, let alone the auditorium where O was speaking. Those tickets had to be approved by someone from the protocol office. Applying ticketholders would need positive ID plus whatever the SecServ wants for additional info. And, those IDs would've been checked on admittance. So, no way was this "spontaneous." Does the MSM pick up on and mention this? Of course not. O is THEIR guy. Ron P.

Bill Seeks Terror Designation for Flotilla Groups
Excerpt: A bill introduced in Congress would ask Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to submit a report determining whether organizations that participated in a failed flotilla to Gaza in July should be designated as a foreign terrorist organization. The bill, offered last month by Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., and co-sponsored by a bipartisan group of 12 others, notes that a United Nations investigation into a previous flotilla effort says that Israel's maritime blockade of Gaza is legal. "Israel's blockade [on Gaza] is acknowledged by the United States as necessary and legal given Hamas' control of Gaza, intention to secure greater weaponry for aggressive purposes and open desire to destroy Israel," the bill says. Greece prohibited the departure of Freedom Flotilla II to the Gaza Strip this summer. The bill also asks that the State Department report "express support and gratitude" to Greece for thwarting the flotilla.

U. S. Government May Be Primary Suppliers of Mexican Drug Cartel Guns
Excerpt: With Operation Fast and Furious headlining the news, there is no doubt civilian arms have been trafficked into Mexico. However, many of the arms used by Mexican cartels are NOT supplied by civilian gun outlets in the United States. Based upon the statistics I have compiled, our State and Defense Departments may be the premier suppliers of weaponry to Mexican drug cartels — not the US civilian.

Egyptian Military Using Lethal Nerve Gas on Protesters
Excerpt: "The Egyptian military has been using a banned chemical agent to deal with hundreds of thousands of protesters, according to several news sources. At least 23 Egyptians have died and more than 1,700 have succumbed to a lethal nerve gas military forces have been using during the past three days in clashes in and around Cairo's Tahrir Square. The lethal gas had been used at the height of South Africa's apartheid in the 1980s and has been banned by international convention. An Australian paper reports the gas canisters are marked 'Made in USA.' " (I recall distinctly how Obama and his European cohorts said to Mubarak: "Go Now." Why are they silent about the people who replaced him? They are much more cruel and barbaric. I am also reminded that my thus-far favorite in the campaigns once chided Obama for not being tougher on Ghadaffi. Yet that country is now a shambles and Al Qaeda is more powerful than ever. I think we need to hear our candidates ALL denounce US involvement in the Arab Sping, even those who initially supported it. This is not the time to play politics. The US public wants honesty more than anything else. –Don Hank. Not sure “CR” qualifies as a nerve agent, but surely nasty stuff. ~Bob.)

Flavor of the month and Ron Paul with nuts
You know, I think I have a touch of cognitive dissonance. I worry that if Ron Paul is elected, he won't fight the enemy because he won't recognize him.
With Michele Bachman (my favorite for now but not perfect), I worry that she would embroil us in more of the endless wars. (During the Arab Spring, she blamed Obama for not being tougher on Ghadaffi. The way things are shaping up there, it looks like we should have stayed out). We need God's guidance nowadays. I do not profess to have the answers. Linked below is a very well written piece of satire on the current scene that is kind of, well, refreshing. It was written by Doug Parris, the operator of the site "The Reagan Wing." Maybe it will help cooler minds to prevail.
--Don Hank

Janet Tavakoli on MF Global
Excerpt: For those unfamiliar, you can read here about Janet.  To say she is the world’s foremost expert on structured finance would be an understatement. … In short the risk doesn’t go away but it’s not on your balance sheet so it is effectively hidden.

CA Dem Assemblywoman doesn’t smile in mug shot
Excerpt: State Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi isn’t smiling in her mug shot, taken after police say she walked out of San Francisco’s Nieman Marcus without paying for $2,450 in merchandise, including leather pants, a black skirt and a white blouse. Hayashi, a Democrat who has served in the Assembly since 2006, was stopped by store security and taken to the Tenderloin police station for questioning. She was arrested on suspicion of felony grand theft and freed on $15,000 bail.

Law Professor Quits Job After Colleague Calls Care Packages for U.S. Troops 'Shameful'
Excerpt: "It’s basically like a 5-year-old throwing a temper tantrum," he told the station. "That is not how we teach our students to rationally look at the issues…We want rational adult discourse and that is not something I would tolerate in my class and it is not something the school should tolerate from one of its professors." (Finally, a post about a college professor that we can be proud of. --MasterGuns)

Armed illegals stalked Border
Excerpt: Five illegal immigrants armed with at least two AK-47 semi-automatic assault rifles were hunting for U.S. Border Patrol agents near a desert watering hole known as Mesquite Seep just north of the Arizona-Mexico border when a firefight erupted and one U.S. agent was killed, records show. A now-sealed federal grand jury indictment in the death of Border Patrol agent Brian A. Terry says the Mexican nationals were "patrolling" the rugged desert area of Peck Canyon at about 11:15 p.m. on Dec. 14 with the intent to "intentionally and forcibly assault" Border Patrol agents. (Mexican Drug Cartels: Now Armed by Obama. ~Bob.)

Why Israel’s letting Gaza’s rockets fly
Excerpt: Will they or won’t they? As questions about an attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities capture world headlines, the Israeli Defense Force faces a more prosaic dilemma: What to do about Gaza? Since August, Israel has experienced a “slow uptick” in rocket fire from Gaza, IDF spokeswoman Lt. Col. Avital Leibovich told me last week.

The Terrorist Threat Beneath the Waves
Excerpt: Two developments in particular suggest a growing need for the United States and other peaceful nations to begin thinking anew about how to defend their maritime commerce, albeit under very different circumstances. The first development is the emergence of an undersea economy. (First attack on us is always free. Later we may do something. ~Bob.)

Attorney General Holder challenges Utah's new immigration law
Has any administration attacked so many states before? Okay, Southern argument for Lincoln, but seriously…~Bob. Excerpt: Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice today challenged Utah’s new immigration law, making it the fourth such lawsuit following legal actions against Arizona, Alabama and South Carolina.
In a civil complaint filed in the District of Utah, Holder's department stated that several provisions of Utah’s H.B. 497 are preempted by federal law. The Utah immigration enforcement law was enacted on March, 15, 2011.

The Islamist-Environmentalist Alliance: Crimes against humanity brought to you by the Sierra Club.
Excerpt: Saudi Arabia has no better friend than the Sierra Club, and the Emirates have no better salesmen than the environmentalists who keep the country hooked on conflict oil. The administration’s sabotage of the Keystone XL project through delays aimed at killing the pipeline is a cynical act of cowardice, and it’s a shot in the arm to the very regimes that it claims to oppose.

Did Castro Get Kennedy?
Excerpt: Two days later Bringuier was astounded to spot Oswald a few blocks away from his store distributing Fair Play for Cuba pamphlets. Carlos approached, accepted a pamphlet, ripped it to pieces and a scuffle ensued. The cops arrived, the scuffle made the news, and a few days later Bringuier and Oswald debated on New Orleans radio and TV. (An article in American Heritage last year made a good historical case that Oswald was working with Cuban intelligence, in response to the Kennedy effort to oust Castro. Maybe Michael Moore, who loves Communist Cuba, will make a documentary about this? No? ~Bob.)

Social Security, Ponzi Schemes and the Need for Reform
Excerpt: Clearly Social Security has many structural characteristics that resemble those of the classic Ponzi or pyramid scheme, says Michael Tanner, a senior fellow with the Cato Institute. For example, like a Ponzi scheme, Social Security does not actually save or invest any of a participant's payments. When a worker pays taxes into the system, that money is used to pay current beneficiaries. Therefore, participants receive payments, not from returns on their own investments, but directly from inflows from subsequent participants.

Secretary Chu’s Quirky Ideas
Excerpt: Chu came up with the idea of a global “glucose economy” to supplant mankind’s dependence on oil while he was teaching physics and molecular and cellular biology at the University of California, Berkeley. For his global glucose economy, vast supplies of fast-growing crops would be planted in the sunny tropics. The plants would be converted into glucose. The glucose would be shipped around the world much as oil is today, for eventual conversion into biofuels to run our cars. (Chu convinced Obama that energy was no problem, because in a few years we would have batteries that would give cars the equivalent of 100mpg. Of course, if we don’t, we’re screwed. ~Bob.)

What's Behind the Dramatic Decline in Youth Employment?
Excerpt: Since the beginning of the recent recession, the employment-population ratio for high-school age youth (16-17 years old) has fallen by nearly a third, to its lowest level ever. However, this recession has exacerbated a longer-run downward trend that actually began in the 1990s and accelerated in the early 2000s. Given the longevity of this trend, it is a mistake to assert that current levels of teenage unemployment are due largely to the recent recession, as this appears not to be the case, says researcher Christopher L. Smith. … Increases in immigration in some states has tracked over time with increases in teenage unemployment as low-skilled immigrants take jobs previously held by teenagers. (and thus the teens don’t learn the basic job-holding skills: show up on time, don’t scare the customers with tattoos, weird clothing or piercings, customer service, do what you are told, get along with co-workers. Need examples? See Occupy Wall Street. ~Bob.)

Ex-Solyndra Staff Eligible for Federal Aid
Excerpt: The Labor Department announced on November 21 that it had approved Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) for the former employees of the bankrupt solar panel maker Solyndra, says That means all of the firm's 1,100 ex-employees are eligible for federal aid packages, including job retraining and income assistance. The department has valued packages at about $13,000 a head. Taxpayers will have to cough up yet another $14.3 million as a result of Solyndra's bankruptcy. They are already on the hook for $528 million in federal loan guarantees to the company that are unlikely to ever be paid back. (You paid to hire them, now you pay to fire them. I worry that readers of my blog will become dehydrated from throwing up. ~Bob.)

Obama's Indefensible Pipeline Punt
Excerpt: President Obama has decided not to consider the fate of the Keystone XL pipeline until after the 2012 election. Should the president choose to cancel the construction of the massive line, he will not only sacrifice thousands of American jobs in constructing and maintaining the pipeline, but will also jeopardize America's energy security, says Vaclav Smil of the American Enterprise Institute. Canada is the single-largest provider of America's imported crude oil and refined oil products, supplying 21.4 percent of all U.S. crude oil purchases abroad in 2010 (the entire Persian Gulf region supplied only 18.4 percent). (Jobs? We don’t need no stinking jobs! ~Bob.)

60% Favor Building Keystone XL Pipeline
Excerpt: Most voters support the building of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada to Texas and believe it can be built without harming the environment. Sixty percent (60%) of Likely U.S. Voters at least somewhat favor building the pipeline which President Obama has delayed until at least 2013 because of environmental concerns. Just 24% are opposed. Sixteen percent (16%) are not sure.

Zeta soldiers launched Mexico-style attack in Harris County
Just seeking a better life, doing jobs Americans won’t do. ~Bob. Excerpt: Four suspects are in custody charged with capital murder in connection with a shooting Monday on Hollister near Bourgeois in northwest Harris County. That shooting left one person dead and an undercover HCSO deputy wounded. Officers with several local and federal agencies were conducting surveillance on an 18-wheeler carrying an undetermined quantity of marijuana when several suspects in vehicles pulled up to the truck and opened fire.

"Make Mine Freedom"
Excerpt: “However, one of the most accurate depictions of America today was a cartoon made in 1948 by the Extension Department of Harding College. The cartoon, entitled Make Mine Freedom, shows what happens when an unsuspecting society sells their freedoms for ‘ism’.

Afghan woman's choice: 12 years in jail or marry her rapist and risk death
Excerpt: She faces the hideous choice of 12 years in jail or marriage to her rapist and risk death. It's a marriage she says she'll accept, so her child can continue to have a mother. (Shari’a—it’s not just a good idea. It’s the New York Times endorsed law! ~Bob.)

Bomb attack on Pakistan school kills policeman
Didn’t get the memo. ~Bob. Excerpt: A bomb attack on a girls' school in northwest Pakistan on Tuesday killed a policeman, wounded eight others and destroyed a wall, police said. The remote-controlled bomb was planted at the outer wall of the government-run middle school in the outskirts of Mardan town in troubled Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, which borders Afghanistan.

Denmark: Muslim cousin marriages fills schools for retarded
Excerpt: Cousin marriages has negative impact on intelligence, sanity, health and society. In Pakistan, 70 percent of all marriages are between first cousins (so-called "consanguinity") and in Turkey the amount is between 25-30 percent. Across the Arab world today an average of 45 percent (in some parts up to 70 percent) of married couples are related. This phenomenon is allowed for by Islam's marriage law, which is delineated in Qur'an 4:23-34, making this something for which Sharia opens the door.

Pelosi Ridicules Catholic "Conscience Thing" by Bob Beauprez
Excerpt: I’m a devout Catholic and I honor my faith and love it…but they (Catholics) have this conscience thing” that she insists put women at physical risk, although Catholic health care providers strongly disagree. (Well, to be fair, most Liberals couldn’t be liberal if they had, “a conscience thing.” ~Bob.)

Corzine's Fraud by Jeff Carter
Excerpt: Corzine committed fraud in my opinion. It was a cardinal sin. The one thing you don’t do is touch your customers' money. What he did is no different than bank robbery. (Corzine served in the Marine Reserves, but like Senator Blumenthal of CT, at a time when joining the reserves got you out of going to Vietnam. Hard for me to think of them as Brother Marines, dedicated to the Corps core values of Honor, Courage and Commitment. ~Bob.)

Europe Set to Declare Bankruptcy in Early 2012? By Mike Shedlock
Excerpt: Panic is spreading says Steen Jakobsen, chief economist at Saxo Bank. Steen eyes the perfect storm including a potential "Chapter 11" call for European banks.

Euro Zone Nightmare: The Turn of Germany? - Rick Moran
Excerpt: Two different signs today that the euro zone's bulwark against catastrophe - Germany - may be in trouble itself. First, Reuters on the "disastrous" German bond sale: A "disastrous" German bond sale on Wednesday sparked fears that Europe's debt crisis was even beginning to threaten Berlin, with the leaders of the euro zone's two strongest economies still firmly at odds over a longer-term structural solution.

Voters Wrestle With Illegal Immigrant Realities - C. Edmund Wright
Excerpt: In other words, border security is job one from purely a practical standpoint, whether or not sealing the border gives a given person the "closure" they want from the other frustrations caused by illegals. In emergency triage, you have to stop the bleeding before you can begin the repair. You just do. And all the good guys agree that stopping the bleeding is job one. And no, I do not buy for a second that because a given candidate may not share your view on the existing illegals that they cannot really mean it on the issue of the border. That is an angry emotional response devoid of any intellectual basis.

Liberals and 'Austerity' - Christopher Chantrill
Excerpt: You'd think a party that cared about the little guy would be saying: Wow, things are going to be really tough for the next few years. We've got to do what we can to make sure that the little guy is protected. We should ease up on the nice-to-haves like really fast trains and green energy. Why, we could even let the odd oil pipeline get built and turn a blind eye to the occasional horizontal fracking between consenting adults. Instead, the Dems have hit the nitro on the Class Warfare Special. My guess is that we are just weeks from the moment when every tyro realizes what the best strategic minds already know: that Obama's class warfare strategy is going to make things worse -- for Democrats.

*Updated* Occupy Wall Street: the rap sheet so far - Posted by John Nolte on Andrew Breitbart's Big Journalism
Excerpt: Fortunately for America, this plan has not only failed miserably it has backfired completely. Thanks to the rise of New Media and our unwillingness to let the MSM’s lies, bias, and cover ups stand for even one more day, Occupy is in its death throes and might take the President and Democratic party down with it. First and foremost, we uncovered the lie that Occupy was grassroots and then we exposed every Occupy rape, poop, death, overdose, old woman thrown down the stairs, attack on a police officer, and public act of masturbation. In the process, public opinion turned against the Occupiers and as a result these Leftists have started doing what the Left always does when they lose … have a tantrum:

The Decline of Nations - Daniel Greenfield (Sultan Knish)
Excerpt: If you define the future negatively, in terms of remedying ills, rather than positively in settling an entire continent, then the future can never arrive. And even if it did, you wouldn't want it to, because those ills, racism, sexism, poverty and pollution are the closest thing you have to an identity. A nation does not have to be multicultural to suffer an identity crisis, not when it's piggybacking on someone else's identity crisis. Japan tried very hard to catch up to Western modernism, now it's racing Europe into economic and demographic decline, without ever opening up its borders or indulging in much political correctness, besides the ritual apologies to the Ainu. Israel is still on the rise economically and demographically, but culturally it has drunk deep of the poisoned wells of European academia.

Sebelius on the Attack! Against the Good Guys of course - The Heartlander
Excerpt: The horror of ObamaCare has now gotten all too personal. Kathleen Sebelius, Obama's secretary of Health and Human Services, has chosen, as her first victim in the coming war on insurance companies, my own insurer, the company that has covered -- and graciously served -- my family for the past 19 years. The Washington Times, via WeaselZippers, has the story: The Obama administration on Monday called on a Mennonite-owned health insurance company to cancel its proposed 11.6 percent rate hike, marking the first time the government has tried to pressure a private company under the new health care law.

Land of Opportunity
Excerpt: This is a story about two nations with two very different ideas about equality. One nation is named Opportunity, and the other is called Outcome. When they run a 100-yard dash in Opportunity, everyone starts at the same time and place and runs the same distance – they call that equality in the land of Opportunity. No two people finish exactly the same because some people run faster than others; that’s how God made them. 

Worth Seeing: Zuccotti Utopia: Portraits of The New Revolutionaries
Interesting pictures. ~Bob. Excerpt: I recently traveled from Colorado to New York the weekend before the demise of the revolutionary social experiment in lower Manhattan known as Occupy Wall Street’s “Camp Anonymous.” I went intending to capture for posterity photographic images of the people and infrastructure that comprised that hopeful utopian “model community for a new world.”

The lovely results of the “Arab Spring” that OWS and their union/Democrat allies are determined to bring to you. ~Bob. Excerpt: No wonder the country is blowing up. An out-of-control kleptocracy is frantically trying to close on townhouses in Chelsea and apartments in the 16th arrondissement before the central bank’s foreign exchange reserves run out. What will ensue, will be horrifying.

10 Steps to a Legal Nation
Newt’s immigration policy. ~Bob.

Donald Berwick on Redistributing Wealth
Obama’s nominee for CMS at Medicare.

Occupy Madison.mpg

A terrifying U.S. debt chart you’ve never seen before
Very scary, but they left out the unfunded liabilities of all levels of government, which the NCPA estimates at $211 Trillion. So it’s really about 14 times worse than this. ~Bob.

Medicare chief Don Berwick steps down in standoff with GOP senators over his confirmation
Excerpt: The point man for carrying out President Barack Obama’s health care law will be stepping down after Republicans succeeded in blocking his confirmation by the Senate, the White House announced Wednesday. Medicare chief Don Berwick, a Harvard professor widely respected for his ideas on how to improve the health care system, became the most prominent casualty of the political wars over a health care overhaul whose constitutionality will be now decided by the Supreme Court.

Good Column: Obama’s Economic Quackery: Obama has learned how to turn a natural recovery into a serial slowdown. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: As 2011 ends, we have discovered how to turn a natural recovery from a near-record recession into a serial slowdown. Almost every haphazard, ad hoc attempt by Barack Obama to jumpstart the economy has only further stalled it. The president has never articulated a diagnosis of why the economy was stalled, never outlined a coherent treatment plan, and so cannot offer a prognosis.

Immigration flood to spell end of Europe?
Excerpt: As the far-right Freedom Party takes the lead in Austria’s general election, its leader, Heinz-Christian Strache, has told RT what he thinks of EU immigration policy and expansion plans, and explained why he wants a national debate on Islamization.

Can liberalism tolerate Islam? by Abdal Hakim Murad
Excerpt: Must one be liberal to belong to the West? For all the polite multiculturalist denials, this question is being put to us more and more insistently. The European Union, as it struggles to articulate a common cultural as well as economic vision, regularly toys with grand statements about Europe as a vision of human community, whose success underpins the universal model now being urged upon the rest of humanity.

Passenger forced to stand for seven hours on U.S. Airways flight because of 400-POUND man sitting next to him

The Tipping Point and the Crossroads by Steve McCann
Excerpt: The United States finds itself at a crossroads, facing a stark reality it can no longer ignore or leave to future generations. We are presently on an irreversible path toward inevitable failure and second-class status. It all started forty-eight years ago, we now can see. The distance America has traveled down this road over the past forty-eight years -- a comparatively short period within the historical life of a nation -- is astounding.

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