Saturday, December 13, 2014

Today's important political news and comment


General News and Comment

With The American Spirit - Not Just Survival But Endurance. By Andy Weddington
Excerpt: Thankfully, our government's incompetence is overshadowed, and salvaged, by a competent military (exceptionally so) and a segment of the populace (overlap noted) that goes about carrying on in the spirit of Patrick Henry's America.

How the Media Is Covering Elizabeth Warren's Plan to Shut Down the Government. By Kevin Glass
Excerpt: During last year's government shutdown when Republicans and Democrats couldn't come to a compromise on spending provisions to continue to fund the government, the media portrayed it as Ted Cruz's fault - Ted Cruz's shutdown, because he wanted to defund Obamacare. This year, Sen. Elizabeth Warren wants to reject the bipartisan spending compromise to get rid of business-friendly deregulatory provisions. But this year, it's not about "Elizabeth Warren's plan to shut down the government." No, the media can't bring themselves to go there. 

Liberals: Obama abandoned us
Excerpt: The White House’s aggressive push to salvage a spending bill on Capitol Hill left liberal lawmakers feeling burned by President Barack Obama — and raised significant doubts about their desire to cooperate heading into next year’s Republican takeover of Congress. Democrats will need every vote they can muster next year as the GOP plans to attack liberal priorities on health care, energy and financial regulation in 2015. But Thursday’s deadline drama offered no signal of party unity, only fresh reminders of the post-election divisions between a president who’s looking to govern during his last two years in office and a newly invigorated populist wing of the party, led by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). (When Brown lost to Warren, the country took a bad hit. ~Bob)

Pelosi sends holiday card to Democrats, praises them for bucking Obama in shutdown showdown. By Stephen Dinan 
Excerpt: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi sent a letter to her House colleagues Friday thanking them for joining her in going toe-to-toe with President Obama on the $1.1 trillion spending bill and nearly defeating it. Mrs. Pelosi portrayed the fight as a strategy designed to achieve leverage in negotiations, suggesting that their goal was to make Republicans worried enough over passing the bill that they might go back and rewrite it, making it more liberal.

Illinois Makes it a Felony to Record Police
Excerpt: How many times has a citizen’s recording of his encounter with a police officer (or even the cop’s own dashcam video) helped to corroborate the civilian’s story and exonerate him? Many times, if it hadn’t been for someone’s video footage of the confrontation, the civilian would be locked up for years, all because of what was written in the police report.

A Bad Night in Libya: Sharyl Attkisson on the Benghazi Cover-up. By Elise Cooper
Excerpt: Stonewalled by Sharyl Attkisson is an account of an investigative reporter who wanted to follow the facts and refused to be intimidated by the Obama administration. She was one of the few mainstream journalists who tried to seek out the truth regarding what happened on that tragic day of September 11th, 2012 in Benghazi, Libya when four Americans were murdered by Islamic terrorists. American Thinker interviewed her about Benghazi. (Thanks again to the Special Ops Speaks guys for bringing this article out for attention. Just more confirmation (as if anyone intelligent needed any more) about the massive duplicity that was brought to bear on the whole Benghazi debacle. --Del)

IRS Makes Billions of Improper Tax Credit Payments
Excerpt: The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC) reduce the tax burden of low income individuals. Unfortunately, for the last decade, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) has been releasing reports on these programs that reveal a large amount of "improper payments," and a new report on the EITC and ACTC reveals the programs continued to be plagued with problems. Tax Foundation economist Alan Cole explains: In 2013, the IRS between $13.3 billion and $15.6 billion in "improper" EITC payments - between 22 and 26 percent of all EITC payments from that year. The TIGTA report estimated that between 25.2 percent and 30.5 percent of ACTC payments for 2013 were improper, adding up to between $5.9 billion and $7.1 billion.

NYC police union wants deBlasio banned from funerals
Excerpt: New York City's rank-and-file police union is urging its members to ban Mayor Bill de Blasio from their funerals. The Patrolmen's Benevolent Association posted a link on its website telling members not to let de Blasio and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito "insult their sacrifice" should they be killed in the line of duty. The union posted a waiver officers can sign requesting the two politicians not attend their funerals due to their "consistent refusal to show police officers the support and respect they deserve."

Excerpt: Mayor Bill de Blasio, a self-declared progressive “man of the people,” has erected a massive new “privacy fence” to keep his constituents from looking in on Gracie Mansion. The new fence — constructed just inside an existing red brick wall and a wrought-iron fence ringing the historic property — was actually dubbed a “privacy fence” by de Blasio and first lady Chirlane McCray, sources told The Post. “So much for being mayor of the people." (Probably concerned a mad, unemployed horse would jump the other one...Barb)

Contractor walking away from VA hospital in Aurora
Excerpt: The U.S. Civilian Board of Contract Appeals agreed with Kiewit-Turner that the VA failed to meet its contractual obligation to manage the Denver VA Medical Replacement Project. The VA did not produce a design that could be built for $604 million but instead has designed a project that would cost more than $1 billion, the board determined. ... U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Aurora, who has battled the VA over construction delays and cost overruns, said he would call a meeting of the Colorado congressional delegation and VA officials to "find a path forward." "We have an obligation to our veterans to get this hospital built, and we have an obligation to the taxpayers to do everything we can to bring down the cost," he said. (This is my Congressman, whom I know very well. I served with him in the Legislature. He served 3 stints in Iraq and was just re-elected in a very high profile race against the former majority leader of the CO house. He has been after this project for at least 2 years, if not more. There is no excuse for oversight on change orders and then blaming a well-respected contractor. --Dorothy)

Good Luck: Sweden says it will pursue a feminist foreign policy to counter macho Russian aggression …” By Eugene Volokh
Excerpt: “… even if no one really knows what that means.” An interesting article by Nathalie Rothschild (Foreign Policy); here’s an excerpt, though you should read the whole piece:

Cromnibus Cronyism: Spending Bill Loaded With Favors. By Peter Fricke 
Excerpt: Opponents on both sides of the aisle say the omnibus spending bill was filled with favors for special interests that Congress was not given time to properly debate. Washington Examiner columnist Tim Carney noted a section of the bill “Modification of Treatment of Certain Health Organizations. Carney wrote, “This provision would provide protection from an Obamacare provision for exactly one entity: Blue Cross Blue Shield.” (Be hard to vote for something named "Cromnibus." ~Bob)

Spending Bill Lets Feds Eavesdrop On Americans. New law 'for the 1st time statutorily authorizes spying on U.S. citizens without [a] legal process'
Excerpt: A legal challenge to the National Security Agency’s spy-on-Americans program pending at the U.S. Court of Appeals in WashingtonD.C., got some unexpected input from Congress this week when members approved a new intelligence apparatus funding plan for 2015. And one congressman let slip that in the bill, for the first time ever, was congressional authority for the acquisition, retention and dissemination of Americans’ private communications. Larry Klayman of FreedomWatch, the attorney who won a determination from a judge that the NSA program likely is unconstitutional, noticed immediately

Jeb Bush sending signals that he may be getting ready for 2016 presidential run
Excerpt: Jeb Bush and his emissaries are sending increasingly strong signals that the former Florida governor is gearing up for a 2016 presidential campaign, with associates saying he could announce his intentions within a month. Bush recently e-mailed major Republican donors asking them to, as several of them put it, “keep your powder dry.” His allies are urging would-be bundlers not to commit to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie or other potential rivals. (I'm concerned about Jeb on immigration and Common Core, but would prefer him to Christie, who is weak on Islamism, among other things. ~Bob)

FDNY Drops Physical Fitness Test Requirement to Boost Female Hire Rate. By Christine Rousselle
Excerpt: In a somewhat controversial move, the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) has dropped the physical test requirement for probationary firefighters. The move was done in part to increase the number of female members in FDNY. (And if she can't carry you out of the burning building, you can sign "Kumbaya" until the smoke overcomes you, secure in the knowledge that your life is worth less than the commissioner's CYP to be PC. ~Bob)

Navy Football Team Announces THIS New Uniform That Will Drive Liberals Insane 
Nice uniforms. That's the revolutionary War Navy Jack on their uniforms, not the Gadsden Flag adopted by the tea Party (though same slogan). go Navy! ~Bob

DHS Admits Catastrophic Impact Of Emp. 130 million Americans at risk, yet feds have no national planning scenario in place
Excerpt: Buried in a 303-page report is an assessment by the Department of Homeland Security that a massive electromagnetic pulse event caused by a solar flare could leave more than 130 million Americans without power for years. In spite of the admission of the cataclysmic consequences of an EMP event, DHS still has not added the threat to its 15 National Planning Scenarios. The assessment of potential damage to the power grid is in a March 2012 report released by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, a DHS agency, this month titled “Federal Interagency Response Plan – Space Weather 2012.” (They'll blame it on the sun, but it will come from elsewhere.....Sun actually has been rather dormant except for one sunspot a while back that shot off several X-flares but we are still here. --Barb)

U.S. Moves to Penalize Venezuelan Officials
Excerpt: The U.S. government moved closer to hardening sanctions on Venezuelan officials for alleged human rights abuses after Senate lawmakers passed a bill that now heads to the lower house, which has backed a similar proposal, for a vote this week.

Obama administration claims a right to hide evidence before Supreme Court
Excerpt: The United States v. June case boils down to this: Can the federal government actively conceal... Today, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in United States v. June, a case that has received little attention, but will have far-reaching implications. The case boils down to this: Can the federal government actively conceal material evidence in order to escape liability? Common sense says no. The Obama administration says yes.

Excerpt: President Barack Obama said just before the recent Ferguson, Missouri, riots, "First and foremost, we are a nation built on the rule of law." Most Americans have little or no inkling of what "rule of law" means. Many think it means obedience to whatever laws legislatures enact. That's a vision that has led to human tragedy down through the ages. Historically, it sanctioned the divine right of kings, whereby a monarch was subject to no earthly authority, deriving his right to rule directly from the will of God. More recently, it's a vision that included the Nuremberg laws, which led to the genocide of European Jews, and the brutal laws of the regimes of Josef Stalin and Mao Zedong, which led to tens of millions of murders.

Indeed: Is America Headed for a Soviet-Style Collapse? By Rachel Marsden
Excerpt: In 1983, Yuri Bezmenov, a former KGB propaganda agent who had also worked for the Soviet news agency RIA Novosti before defecting to Canada in the 1970s, gave a speech in Los Angeles in which he outlined the various ways by which a free society could force its own collapse simply by allowing itself to be subverted. Bezmenov explained how it could happen without an external enemy even firing a shot, as a nation could rot from within as a result of the insidious undermining of free-market and democratic principles. Recall why the Soviet Union imploded. (I've been saying so for years. See my book, The Coming Collapse of the American Republic.
All royalties go to a charity to help wounded veterans. But for a free 80-page PDF you can read on line, send me an email at tartanmarine(at) ~Bob)

Gun News

This Major Grocery Store Just Took a Huge Stand Against Anti-Gun Liberals
Excerpt: America’s largest grocery store chain has refused to accede to calls from Moms Demand Action (MDA) to ban guns from its stores, instead asking 12 protesters to leave.
Cincinnati-based Kroger said that the chain will continue its policy of following the regulations of the states in which its stores operate, according to Truth Revolt. (I've always like the chain's business model, but now I like them even better. They showed courage, in not buckling under to the demands of what are really PC bullies, demanding everyone see things just the way they do. --Del)

2 Robbers Lose Gunfight With 74-Year-Old Woman. Pawn-shop owner opens fire when armed thug jumps counter
Excerpt: Two suspects are in custody after Springdale Police said they robbed C & S Gun and Pawn shop at gun-point Saturday morning (Dec. 6). ...Police said 25-year-old Marcus Gould and 20-year-old Leon Roberson are in custody after attempting to rob the store carrying semi-automatic pistols. They said the owner, Shirley Cornett, pulled out her .38 revolver and shot Gould in the arm as he was jumping over the counter towards her husband, Clint.

Race Card News

How to Make Your Own Race Riot. By Daniel Greenfield
Excerpt: The angry rioter is a sacred figure in the progressive pantheon of social justice. The shirtless men in bandanas carting away cell phones are so outraged by injustice that they are willing to take to the streets and do what progressive hipsters taking social justice selfies of themselves in souvenir t-shirts plastered with the face of the latest victim of “white supremacism” can only dream about. But the saint of the looted convenience store is as mythical a figure as the selfless community organizer. The race riot isn’t a bubbling stew of outrage out of which wounded souls emerge to cry out for justice. It’s a complicated criminal conspiracy in which the perpetrators rarely suffer any consequences. (Very nice analysis of how riots are created by manipulators interested only in their own power agenda. And who is it really working up the crowd and why. --Del)

Columbia University Law School offers to Reschedule Exams for Students ‘Impaired’ by ‘Trauma over Grand Juries.’ By Thomas Lifson
Excerpt: What kind of lawyers does Columbia University plan to foist on the courts and public of the United States? Apparently people so emotionally vulnerable that an action of a grand jury could traumatize and in effect disable them are worthy of a law degree from one of the nation’s most prestigious law schools. Clients beware: your Columbia-certified future lawyer might fall apart if a ruling goes against him or her and become unable to represent your interests! (OK, so now we have people, Law students no less, who are so psychologically delicate that some current events can blow them away and leave them unable to prepare for their exams? If I wasn't worried before about the decline of mental capacities in our society, this would have put me right over the edge into anxiety about our future. This is STUPID, and what's worse than the students saying they need it, is that the school is run by idiots who will then act on such silly, pantywaist complaints. Clearly none of these people will ever make it to practice law in an open court that would be far, far too stressful for their delicate minds. --Del. This speaks to the state of decline this country is experiencing with respect to our citizenry in general. Oh the horrors we seem to face! The conditioning of our citizens is well underway. I fear for America…Greg)

SAVAGE: Is Burning Whites The NEW ‘Knock Out’ Game for Blacks?
Excerpt: Is burning whites the new knock-out game? Scroll down to see the stories of 16 WHITE people that were burned by BLACKS in the last few years. With the endless media frenzy focused on Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin, you will not hear about most of these from the mainstream media. Why? Because they are white.

Worth Seeing: Lady Drops Viral Ferguson Rant On Who She Thinks is To Blame for the Michael Brown Shooting
Graphic language, but this black woman pulls no punches. A black Marine friend said in his view, if the cop says stop, you stop. And if you don't stop, what happens next is on you. ~Bob

Black Lives Matter...Well Sort Of. By Ryan Bomberger
Excerpt: We live in a hashtag world. It’s much easier to deal with a few emotionally charged words than the fact that those words misrepresent reality. #BlackLivesMatter. Well, it depends. 

Excerpt: Don’t tell Al Sharpton, Barack Obama or Eric Holder…But, blacks commit twenty-five more assaults against whites than whites do against blacks. It’s an inconvenient truth. (25X seems high to me. In murder rates, The FBI says that in 2011, 193 black folks were killed by whites and 2,447 by other blacks, while 448 whites were killed by blacks, while 2,630 were killed by other whites. ~Bob)

Obamacare/Government Healthcare News

More Videos: Gruber Talks About Writing Obamacare; Said Under Oath He Didn't Write It. By Katie Pavlich 
Excerpt: During an exchange with Republican Rep. Cynthia Lummis, Gruber said he did not "draft the legislation" and argued he was simply an adviser to the White House before Obamacare was pushed through in 2010. ... But now new video dug up by investment advisor Rich Weinstein, the man behind Grubergate, shows the Obamacare architect boasted on numerous occasions about writing the legislation.

The unfairness of Obamacare. The search begins for health care based on the free market. By Ben S. Carson
Excerpt: Next year, when the employer mandate of Obamacare is activated, millions of Americans will be screaming in pain as their health insurance premiums skyrocket or as they lose their health insurance altogether. It will be just one more piece of the rapidly crumbling health care system that was forced upon the unsuspecting American people through political manipulation and deception.

Obamacare Numbers Don't Spell Success
Excerpt: While insurance coverage increased from 2013 to 2014, so did costs. For building the exchanges alone, those costs reached almost $5 billion for taxpayers. Medicaid growth was responsible for 7.1 percent of the health insurance coverage growth during the first half of 2014 -- 6.1 million people out of the 8.5 million that had enrolled during the first half of the year. As of October 2014, there were 6.7 million exchange enrollees according to the Department of Health and Human Services. But because almost 4 million Americans lost employer-based health insurance during the first half of 2014, Moffit and Manyari-Magro say the net gain in private health insurance was just 2.4 million.

Obamacare Encourages Consolidation, Discourages Independent Medical Practices
Excerpt: In 2008, 62 percent of American physicians were "independent," meaning they had their own practices and were not employed by hospitals. By 2012, that number had fallen to 49 percent. Today, just 35 percent of American doctors are independent. Why? One of the many effects of the Affordable Care Act, writes Scott Gottlieb, a physician and resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, has been the loss of private practices in favor of consolidated health systems that employ doctors as salaried workers.

Undocumented Democrat News

Illegal Alien Pedophiles: 4,317 Charges Filed Against Illegals in ONE YEAR… in ONE STATE (and it’s only our 10th largest)
Excerpt: York. 4,317 charges of sexual assault on minors were recently recorded in a 12 month period in America's 10th largest state — North Carolina.

"You're Greener than Gore" News

Climate Catastrophe. By John Stossel 
Excerpt: People argue about whether the “consensus” of scientists is that we face disaster because of global warming. Instead of debating whether man’s greenhouse gasses will raise temperatures, we should argue about how we gauge disasters. If you take most environmentalists and climate scientists at their word, the Earth heated up about 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit over the past century, not much more than it heated up the century before that. Warming may increase, but no one can be certain of that.

CBO makes the fracking case
Excerpt: In the past decade, the United States has suffered a housing implosion, a catastrophic financial crisis and the agonizingly slow growth of a jobless, low-wage recovery.
But not all news has been bad, as the Congressional Budget Office made plain this week with a new report on the fracking revolution. The report should remind members of the new Congress that they should ignore the dishonest environmental radicals and their false propaganda and help make the nation a net petroleum exporter again.

Religion of Peace News

Congress must enable the president to stop the Islamic State. By Marco Rubio
Excerpt: It is clear that our efforts to defeat the Islamic State have been inadequate. Half-measures will not work against a growing threat from radical Islamists that are uniting fractured terrorist groups around the world under one banner. Over the past six months, as the Obama administration has continued to develop its strategy for defeating the group, our enemies have not been standing still. The Islamic State now reaches from North Africa through the Middle East, Pakistan and South Asia and into Southeast Asia. Libya, with its absence of government control and its vast stocks of weapons, has become a particularly deadly terrorist haven that is allowing the Islamic State to broaden its map, gain strength and plot attacks against Europe and the United States.

Gen. John Allen carries a heavy rucksack in the fight against the Islamic State. By David Ignatius 
Excerpt: Gen. John Allen must sometimes feel as if he’s navigating a maze as he organizes the coalition to defeat the Islamic State: Iran is a silent partner in Iraq but a potential adversary in Syria and elsewhere; Turkey and Saudi Arabia are crucial allies but skittish and self-interested ones; the very map of battle is uncertain, as boundaries in the region begin to blur. When Allen took the job in September, Islamic State fighters had overrun much of Iraq and Syria, and President Obama was worried that Jordan and Saudi Arabia might be next. 

A Travesty of a Report. By Charles Krauthammer
Excerpt: It’s a kind of temporary-insanity defense for the Bush administration. And it is not just unctuous condescension but hypocritical nonsense. In the aftermath of 9/11, there was nothing irrational about believing that a second attack was a serious possibility and therefore everything should be done to prevent it. Indeed, this was the considered opinion of the CIA, the administration, the congressional leadership and the American people.

Thinking About Torture. By Jonah Goldberg
Excerpt: It’s true that torture is to some extent in the eye of the beholder. Everyone can agree that hot pokers, the rack and the iron maiden qualify. But loud music, sleep deprivation and even waterboarding? At first, maybe not. But over time, yes. Torture can be a lot like poison: The dosage matters. One of the great problems with the word “torture” is that it tolerates no ambiguity. It is a taboo word, like racism or incest. Once you call something torture, the conversation is supposed to end. It’s a line no one may cross. As a result, if you think the enhanced interrogation techniques are necessary, or simply justified, you have to call them something else. Similarly, many sincere opponents of these techniques think that if they can simply call them “torture,” their work is done.

John Yoo: I Was Never Asked to Testify for Torture Report. By Bill Hoffmann
Excerpt: John Yoo, the ex-Justice Department official who drafted the so-called "torture memos" that guided the CIA in grilling terror suspects, says he would have happily testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee that issued a damning report about the controversial interrogations, but was never asked. "This committee, the [Sen. Dianne] Feinstein committee, chose not to interview anybody. They did not interview any of the government officials including myself. Didn't even call, didn't even ask me. I would've been happy to testify," Yoo said Thursday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV. (Here is another really excellent point being made about the Feinstein report. Again, I do not doubt that things were handled badly in too many instances, some very poor judgment was used, and some of it was tragic and shameful. That was, sadly, bound to happen when everyone was pretty much going bonkers about having watched the Towers come down and 3000 innocents slaughtered because they went to work that morning or got on a plane. Putting an enormous effort into play in a rush guaranteed mistakes would be made. That is not an excuse, and I still am unhappy at how many mistakes were made. But the report was very heavily political, and pretending it was issued solely in service to the nation is not going to fly with anyone who tries at all to look at more than one side of the issues. And the continual yammering that none of the interrogations produced anything valuable is a stupid lie. KSM, the architect of 9/11, resisted all efforts to get him to talk until he was waterboarded, after which he sang like a bird and gave up tremendous amounts of invaluable intelligence. Condemning those who decided he should be subjected to harsh measures is easy Monday morning quarterbacking, by people who weren't charged with the mission of protecting this country and its citizens. Those who were given that responsibility did their sincere best, nobody was saying "just go treat innocents badly for the hell of it", it was all about trying to protect us. I really wish they'd been much more careful about it, but I will not throw that first stone, and no one who hasn't been in their situation should be in a rush to do so. All the "holier than anybody" critics coming out of the woodwork should just shut up and go home and be grateful we had people who tried and succeeded in avoiding more major attacks. --Del)\

Former Democrat Senator, Medal of Honor recipient and a Navy SEAL Bob Kerrey took sometime yesterday to criticize in USAToday his colleagues in the Senate for the so-called “torture report” that they released the other day. Apparently, he’s not too happy with it for many of the reasons that folks on the other side have cited; I do not need to read the report to know that the Democratic staff alone wrote it. The Republicans checked out early when they determined that their counterparts started out with the premise that the CIA was guilty and then worked to prove it.

Feinstein's Duplicity: 68 Congressional Members Briefed On Enhanced Interrogation From 2001-2007
Excerpt: While the media coverage of the Feinstein report is talking about what the "evil CIA" may have done to some prisoners and whether or not the information extracted from those prisoners was actionable, missing is a discussion of when the congress was briefed about the techniques used. To paraphrase a line from Howard Baker during the "Watergate Hearings," America wants to know, "What did Congress know and when did they know it?"

Ex-CIA Directors: Interrogations Saved Lives. The Senate Intelligence investigators never spoke to us—the leaders of the agency whose policies they are now assailing for partisan reasons.
The following response is from former CIA Directors George J. Tenet, Porter J. Goss and Michael V. Hayden (a retired Air Force general), and former CIA Deputy Directors John E. McLaughlin, Albert M. Calland (a retired Navy vice admiral) and Stephen R. Kappes :
Excerpt: The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on Central Intelligence Agency detention and interrogation of terrorists, prepared only by the Democratic majority staff, is a missed opportunity to deliver a serious and balanced study of an important public policy question. The committee has given us instead a one-sided study marred by errors of fact and interpretation—essentially a poorly done and partisan attack on the agency that has done the most to protect America after the 9/11 attacks. Examining how the CIA handled these matters is an important subject of continuing relevance to a nation still at war. In no way would we claim that we did everything perfectly, especially in the emergency and often-chaotic circumstances we confronted in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. As in all wars, there were undoubtedly things in our program that should not have happened. When we learned of them, we reported such instances to the CIA inspector general or the Justice Department and sought to take corrective action. (First off, regardless of the political intent of the Democrat Senate Report on torture, etc, (and there was most certainly politics involved), there is no doubt that mistakes were made by the CIA in the overall campaign to find, arrest, and interrogate Al Queda agents. Everyone acknowledges that, and it's disappointing and more than regrettable, but given the magnitude of the effort, having some mistakes made was inevitable, and anyone who thinks an operation like that could be run perfectly has no concept of what that means. All that said, the report is absolutely one-sided, and I think it's critical to listen to what the CIA Directors have to say about it. Those who hate George Bush and aren't that fond of this nation in various ways would like to tell us all that it was a total horror show, billions of dollars spent and all kinds of innocents suffering, for no real result. Which makes us the Really Bad Guys again. That is simply not true, it's highly inaccurate and highly partisan. Yes, we need to understand that our own agency was less than perfect in what they were trying to do, which was TO PROTECT ALL OF US. And then it's time to get off the inflammatory rhetoric and self-condemnation. And to be thankful that a lot of other attacks were shortstopped and the upper leadership of Al Queda was badly damaged. Those are achievements worth noting and appreciating. --Del)

Excerpt: "I turned to the president and I said, something to the effect of, ‘Mr. President, you need to bomb the Iranian nuclear facilities, because if you don't, Iran will have a nuclear weapon on your watch and the course of world history will change,'" she told the Washington Free Beacon. "And he got his condescending smile on his face and laughed at me and said, ‘Well Michele, it's just not that easy.' And I said to him, ‘No, Mr. President, you're the president, it will happen on your watch, and you'll have to answer to the world for this.' And that was it and then I left. Merry Christmas," she said with a laugh

President who vowed to end war, now seeks sweeping power to expand it. By Stephen Dinan 
Excerpt: Secretary of State John F. Kerry told Congress Tuesday that President Obama wants expansive war powers to pursue the Islamic State terrorists wherever and however he deems necessary, stunning lawmakers by requesting a war authorization that would even allow the Pentagon to commit American combat troops to the fight.

Turkey "Improves" Education. By Burak Bekdil
Excerpt: Systematic Islamist indoctrination in Turkey is becoming less stealthy. Education is the new battlefield. Turkey's government is pushing to advance its declared policy goal of "raising devout (Muslim) generations."

Khaled Mashal’s Road to Damascus Runs Through Tehran. By Ali Alfoneh
Excerpt: An interview this week with a Hamas spokesman reveals that despite a temporary rupture in the Palestinian organization’s ties to Iran, the group remains reliant as ever on its benefactor, the Islamic Republic. Speaking to Iran’s ISNA news agency, Hamas international affairs spokesman Osama Hamdan expressed hope that the group’s leader Khaled Mashal would soon visit Tehran to discuss “hostile acts of the Zionist regime towards al-Aqsa Mosque.” The rest of the interview, however, discloses the real purpose of Hamdan’s presence in Iran: normalizing Hamas’s relations with Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria.

Muslims with Dead Baby in Trunk Allowed to Drive Away by Tennessee Cops For Fear of Offending Muslims
Excerpt: On Wednesday a glaring case of sharia occurred in Tennessee. A police officer allowed a car full of Saudi Arabians to drive away with a dead baby in the trunk so as not to be “disrespectful” towards Muslims.

Day of insurgent violence kills 19 in Afghanistan
Excerpt: Three separate Taliban attacks killed at least 19 people in Afghanistan on Saturday, including a senior judicial official and personnel working to clear one of the most heavily mined regions of the world. ... The Taliban claimed responsibility for the Saturday attacks, as well as one late Friday in which two American soldiers were killed, according to an international military official who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity as the information wasn’t authorized for release. 

Rebels in northern Syria say U.S. has stopped paying them. By Mousab Alhamadee And Roy Gutman
Excerpt: The United States has stopped paying most of the pro-western rebels fighting in northern Syria and has suspended the delivery of arms to them, rebel commanders told McClatchy Tuesday. A top civilian coordinator for rebel forces estimated that the cutoff affects 8,000 of the estimated 10,000 fighters in Idlib and Hama provinces, where the so-called moderate rebels face a severe challenge from the Nusra Front, al Qaida’s affiliate in Syria. (Maybe Obama read in my blog that there are No Good Guys in Syria. ~Bob)

Why moderates don't speak out: Imam who condemns Islamic State stabbed in N-W Bosnia
Excerpt: An imam of the Islamic Community in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), known for his opposition to the recruiting of young men in BiH to fight for Islamic State, has been stabbed and seriously injured, Dnevni Avaz daily said on Tuesday, adding that police were investigating the attack.

Iraqi churches used as Islamic State prisons
Excerpt: The Iraqi city of Mosul was once a majority-Christian city, but is now an Islamic State (IS) stronghold, where militants have repurposed deserted church buildings as prisons. (Imagine the world wide outcry if Christians were using mosques as prisons. ~Bob)

Excerpt: Some 100 evangelical Christians in eastern Ethiopia were without a central place for worship Friday, December 5, after local authorities destroyed their church building, a church official and rights activists said. The Y Semay Birihan Church, or Heaven's Light Church, was demolished last week by Shenkore district police in the heavily Islamic city of Harar, said Pastor Zemach Tadesse, the 30-year-old senior pastor of the church.

Poll shows strong Palestinian support for attacks
Excerpt: The poll found 86 percent of respondents believe the shrine is in grave danger from Israel. It said 80 percent supported individual attacks by Palestinians who have stabbed Israelis or rammed cars into crowded train stations.

Excerpt: Canon Andrew White, who is known as the 'vicar of Baghdad', told Orthodox Christian Network that the killings happened in a Christian enclave close to Baghdad which has been taken over by ISIS (formerly known as Islamic State).

ISIS in Syria beheads man for 'blasphemy'
Excerpt: The man was killed in a public square in the town of Sulouk on Monday in front of a crowd that included children, the British-based Observatory for Human Rights said. Rights groups say ISIS has beheaded and stoned to death many people in areas it controls in Syria and Iraq for actions they see as violating their interpretation of Islamic law, such as adultery, stealing and blasphemy.

Cañon City Police Department: Suspect in officer stabbing made 'Islamic-type statements'
Excerpt: The 32-year-old man who was shot five times after allegedly stabbing a Cañon City Police Department officer made "Islamic-type statements" prior to the incident, according to the CCPD. ... "At that point in time, Mr. Clark walked inside the store and he shoplifted a 9mm handgun and put it inside his waistband, walked out the back door," Schultz said. ... "The suspect at this point dropped to the ground, never lost consciousness, was bleeding profusely and continued to make comments," Schultz said. "Next to him was the Qur'an, which fell out onto the ground and during this first aid situation at this point, he did ask for his Qur'an."


Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here: His blog of political news and conservative comment is

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