Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Political Digest for December 21, 2011

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. Help your friends and relatives stay informed by passing the digest on. In some cases I post things sent to me by readers I might not have posted on my own, to get ideas circulating.

For those who want further information about the topics covered in this blog, I recommend the following sites. I will add to this as I find additional good sources.

Worth reading: The Past and the Present By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: This is not just another election and Barack Obama is not just another president whose policies we may not like. With all of President Obama's broken promises, glib demagoguery and cynical political moves, one promise he has kept all too well. That was his boast on the eve of the 2008 election: "We are going to change the United States of America." Many Americans are already saying that they can hardly recognize the country they grew up in. We have already started down the path that has led Western European nations to the brink of financial disaster.

My Christmas poems
A repeat for new blog readers. From my book Old Jarhead Poems. ~Bob.

Oh Holy Night by Carrie Underwood

Oh Holy Night by Enya in a Christmas Story

Illegal immigrants have no right to arms - court
Excerpt: Illegal immigrants do not have a right to bear arms under the U.S. Constitution, a federal appeals court ruled on Friday. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit, based in Missouri, rejected an appeal brought by Joaquin Bravo Flores, who was charged with possessing a firearm. Agreeing with the 5th Circuit, the court concluded that the protections of the Second Amendment do not extend to undocumented immigrants. (This should be so obvious, the lawyer who filed the suit should be disbarred. ~Bob.)

Newt Lectures Megyn Kelly On Constitutional History

Republicans’ authenticity problem
Excerpt: A bare majority of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents see former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as willing to say what they actually believe, according to a new Washington Post-ABC-News poll. Call it the authenticity gap.

Biden Says Taliban Is Not Our Enemy
Excerpt: On a Saturday in late October in Kabul, Afghanistan, a car carrying explosives rammed into an armored U.S. military bus, killing 13 Americans, including five soldiers and eight civilian staff. In August, a Chinook helicopter was shot down in Afghanistan, killing 30 Americans. Who was responsible? The Taliban. And who now says the Taliban is not America's enemy? Vice President Joseph Biden.

A smear that prospered far too long By Arthur Herman
 Excerpt: Five years late, Ilario Pantano has been fully vindicated. Now where does he go to get his reputation back? A dogged NCIS investigator has proven that Pantano, then a Marine lieutenant, should never have been put up on war-crimes charges back in 2004-5. But that doesn’t wipe away the endless smears thrown at him since. Maybe the media and the bloggers hated him so much because he lived the classic American success story.

Company's departure a sign state's business climate is in the trash
Excerpt: An ugly scene in the California economy played out in our own backyard this week, as Waste Connections, Sacramento's most valuable company, announced that it is moving its corporate headquarters – and the 100 jobs that go with it – to a Houston suburb. Waste Connections was a shining star in local business, starting here 15 years ago as a one-man shop and growing into a 6,500-employee behemoth operating in 30 states. (The productive are fleeing the disaster states like California, Illinois and New York. Ohio has voted to join them, and Wisconsin may recall Scott Walker and join the fiscal toilet list as well. Unfortunately, moving to Texas won’t escape the affect of progressive policies in those states on the national economy. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: EMERGENCY evacuation plans for Brits living in Spain and Portugal are being drawn up amid fears of the euro collapsing. The drastic proposals emerged as a former Security Minister warned expats could be left stranded and destitute by the break-up of the single currency. Brits who invested their savings in their adopted countries may not be able to withdraw cash and could even lose their homes if banks call in loans, worried ministers are warning.

Capitalism and the Right to Rise: In freedom lies the risk of failure. But in statism lies the certainty of stagnation. By Jeb Bush.
Excerpt: Congressman Paul Ryan recently coined a smart phrase to describe the core concept of economic freedom: "The right to rise." Think about it. We talk about the right to free speech, the right to bear arms, the right to assembly. The right to rise doesn't seem like something we should have to protect.

NYT: Scandals Are Only For The GOP
Excerpt: When Bill Clinton took office, he promptly fired all 93 US attorneys, as was his right. They are political appointees. When Bush fired eight, late in his term, the Democrats ginned up scandal, aghast at Bush and his AG, Alberto Gonzales, for politicizing the political appointments. (In fact, two were retiring anyway, another was fired for insubordination.) Now we have Fast and Furious and the scandal…what scandal?

Worth Reading: The Hundred Years' German War by Victor Davis Hanson
Since I ran this, several more people sent it to me. In case you missed it, it’s important. ~Bob. Excerpt: These days we recoil at terms like "national character" that seem tainted by the nightmares of the past. But no other politically correct exegesis offers better reasons why a booming Detroit of 1945 today looks like it was bombed, and a bombed-out Berlin of 1945 now is booming. … Behind all the EU's 11th-hour gobbledygook, Germany's new European order is clear: If you wish to live like a German, then you must work and save like a German. Take it or leave it.

Good column: Testing the Waters of Economic Liberty By George Will
Excerpt: In 1927, seven years before the board game was created, Washington state decided to play monopoly. It gave a private interest the exclusive right to operate a ferry on 55-mile long Lake Chelan in the northern Cascade Mountains. The state apparently will defend this folly until Judgment Day, when state officials will get an earful from the Creator who -- we have Jefferson's word for this -- endowed everyone, including Jim and Cliff Courtney, with the rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

69% Say Photo ID Voting Laws Are Not Discriminatory
Excerpt: Attorney General Eric Holder signaled last week that the Justice Department will be closely examining new state laws that require showing a photo ID before voting for potential racial bias, but voters nationwide overwhelmingly favor such a requirement and reject the idea that it is discriminatory. Seventy percent (70%) of Likely U.S. Voters believe voters should be required to show photo identification such as a driver’s license before being allowed to cast their ballot. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that just 22% oppose this kind of requirement.

NBC News, the KKK and the State of Journalism
Excerpt: By now you probably have heard about the MSNBC drive-by aimed at Mitt Romney; the one that said he used the same slogan on the campaign trail as the Ku Klux Klan used to use. Well, not really.

Excerpt: Former Utah Governor and current Presidential candidate Jon Huntsman took the time on Friday to sit down with me and answer some questions on his views. You can hear the entire audio of the interview by clicking below, or I have generated a rough transcript which you can find below the fold. I will admit to being impressed by Governor Huntsman, who I had largely written off earlier in the campaign. As a matter of presentation, he seems to come off better on audio than video for some reason. In any event, he answered my questions candidly and with a bare minimum of politician-speak. He refused an opportunity to backtrack on some of the earlier comments attributed to his campaign, but I think most readers will find that his positions are more conservative than they would expect.

Pakistan: Man cuts off teenage wife's lips and nose; police refuse to register a case against him
Excerpt: As this story notes, resistance to stronger legislation against domestic violence has come from "religious parties" -- that is, those who will tolerate no limitations on the reach of Islamic law. Moving against domestic violence threatens to criminalize what Allah made lawful: the principle that a man can hit (yes, hit) a woman in his household from whom he fears disobedience (Qur'an 4:34). Does the Qur'an say to disfigure one's wife with a razor? No. But this case is a consequence of the culture of tolerance toward and defense of domestic violence: the husband clearly felt he was justified in this act, and liked his odds of getting away with it.

Palestinian Liberation Army mufti misunderstands Islam, says caliphate will return and West will pay jizya "or else you will bring the sword to your necks"
Excerpt: Islamic spokesmen in the West are always telling us that only greasy Islamophobes think that Muslims want to restore the caliphate and force non-Muslims to pay the jizya, the tax on the subjugated dhimmis specified in Qur'an 9:29, or be killed. Sheikh Nader Tamimi must therefore be a greasy Islamophobe in disguise who has somehow become mufti of the Palestinian Liberation Army despite his bigotry and hatred and ignorance of Islam, or else he is a simple garden-variety Misunderstander of Islam.

Love jihad sparks hate
Excerpt: "From January to November this year, 84 Hindu girls have been missing. Of these, 69 confessed they'd been lured by Muslim youths who professed love. The worrying factor is that some girls are pushed into the flesh trade," she said.

EXCLUSIVE: EPA Ponders Expanded Regulatory Power In Name of 'Sustainable Development' By George Russell
The Green Shirts are coming! ~Bob. Excerpt: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants to change how it analyzes problems and makes decisions, in a way that would give it vastly expanded power to regulate businesses, communities and ecosystems in the name of “sustainable development,” the centerpiece of a global United Nations conference slated for Rio de Janeiro next June. The major focus of the EPA thinking is a weighty study the agency commissioned last year from the National Academies of Science. Published in August, the study, entitled “Sustainability and the U.S. EPA,” cost nearly $700,000 and involved a team of a dozen outside experts and about half as many National Academies staff.

Excerpt: Illinois Republican Rep. Joe Walsh, one of the first members of Congress to demand Attorney General Eric Holder resign over the ill-fated Operation Fast and Furious gun-walking program, told The Daily Caller that Holder’s recent use of racial politics to attack his critics appears to be something President Barack Obama “orchestrated.” (Holder tells NY Times people out to get him because he is, you know, like the President, African American. Plays race card and suggests those opposing him are extremist racists. Nothing like spinning a lie so twisted…. --Barb.)

Falcone's wireless company (LightSquared) running out of cash
Excerpt: The upstart wireless company that is being bankrolled by Philip Falcone's $5 billion Harbinger Capital Partners hedge fund could run out of money during the second quarter of 2012, according to the company's financial statement. LightSquared, which registered a $427 million net loss during the first nine months of this year, may not be able to "continue as a going concern" unless it can raise additional capital and financing, the statement reviewed by Reuters said. (lucky for them they have we taxpayers to fall back on. ~Bob.)

Obama-Napolitano release deceptive border report, say agents
Excerpt: President Barack Obama and Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano applauded the latest U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) report that claims an increase in illegal drug seizures and a decrease in illegal border-crossers in fiscal year 2011. CPB claims in a press statement that these results are due to one of the largest increased in manpower and resources along the country’s borders. However, members of the Border Patrol agents' union -- the National Border Patrol Council -- say the report is misleading and that the increase in drug seizures actually means the Mexican cartels are more active and smuggling more drugs into the U.S.

Jon Huntsman Pulls Into
in New Hampshire
Excerpt: That’s what you may have read had Jon Huntsman ran a smarter campaign, or at the very least hired smarter people. Let me ‘splain… I know many in the media like to focus on Erick Erikson’s “conversion” to Jon Huntsman as a truuuuue conservative candidate.

Man Eats Cocaine From Brother's Butt, Dies
Attention, Darwin Awards. We have a winner. ~Bob.

"Moderate" "Palestinian" Authority Magazine Praises Hitler For Murdering Jews
Jesse Jackson’s “home boys.” ~Bob.

Excerpt: Conservatives come in all shapes, sizes and colors. We come from every education and income level. We come from every sexual orientation and every faith. With that in mind, let me introduce myself. My name is Becky. I am a conservative and a Wiccan. I think it is safe for me to assume that my audience is pretty well-acquainted with conservatism. We conservatives believe in small government, low taxes and a strong military. But it is also safe to say that many of you aren’t familiar with Wicca, my religion. (I suggest she not visit Saudi Arabia. ~Bob.)

Occupy Movement taught in sixth grade??
Excerpt: In a recent conversation with a friend, she informed me that she will soon be removing her children from an Indiana public school system because of the indoctrination her sons are witnessing in the classroom. She explained to me two different accounts that have recent occurred. The first incident occurred when her son was exposed to five days of discussion and class work concerning the
Occupy Wall Street

Poll: Paul as third party candidate could doom GOP in 2012
Excerpt: Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul (R-Texas) is gaining steam in his race for the GOP nomination, up to his highest level yet — 15 percent — in the new Washington Post-ABC News national poll. He trails President Obama by a mere five points among registered voters in a possible general election matchup. But should Paul fall short of winning his party’s nod and opt to run as a third-party candidate, the survey finds he could seriously shake up the 2012 political calculus, largely to Obama’s benefit. (And be known to history as the tuchus who reelected Obama? Not that I think there would be much history written in the coming dark ages. ~Bob.)

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