Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Not-to-be-missed political news and opinion today

I swear I heard the Madison weatherman say, "There's a wind chill advisory in effect until May..." ~ Bob

Go see this movie: 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
Bonnie and I say to Tuesday. See it and tell your friends to see it. (Bernie supporters will want to tell their friends to see it as well.) It is very intense, very emotional. It does not attack President Obama or Secretary of State Clinton, but they are the people who launched a war in Libya that was not authorized by Congress to overturn a dictator who was no threat to us. They replaced it with a terrorist hellhole, a stronghold for al Qaeda and ISIS. This was just one of the results. For those who have never served, you can get some idea of having to make split-second, life and death decision in the chaos of combat, which may be picked over and questioned months later by bureaucrats and the media who have unlimited time and are not in fear of their lives. The movie is controversial because the people who fought on the ground have been called liars by those higher up who from the White House to the CIA to the Pentagon to the State Department are in CYA mode. My opinion at the time was that the Obama administration made the decision that a rescue attempt might kill many Muslim civilians and lead to riots in Muslim countries, undermining the narrative that al Qaeda was on the run and the president had everything under control, damaging the Obama campaign more than four dead Americans would. I believed than and still believed their lives were sacrificed for political expediency. ~Bob. We saw 13 Hours yesterday. I was a baby during WWII, so I only became angry about the ship, the St Louis, being returned to Europe with desperate refugees, many years later, but as an adult the truly angriest I have been (and MANY things have angered me!) has been about Benghazi.  Seeing the movie reinforced that anger 100-fold. While waiting in line for tickets, I overheard a woman asking the ticket-seller (an older guy, well-known for his film knowledge) whether the movie was political. His response was, "I haven't seen the movie yet, but just the fact that it was made and released now, makes it political."  I am amazed that the movie was allowed out, and I consider going to see it, in itself - and encouraging others to go - an act of defiance:  against the deliberate violation, by this administration, of the government's primary duty of protecting its citizens.  Going to see 13 Hours is a small gesture, but it does reinforce the anger, and adds even more - about the complicit media which glosses over any past actions of the administration, and HC, as "old news". Old news, my foot.
Grrrrrrr. --DG.

Related: Benghazi Families Push Back Against Clinton for Calling Them Liars

Pakistan university attack: at least 30 dead as gunmen storm Bacha Khan campus
Excerpt: Dozens also injured after militants apparently used cover of thick morning fog to launch attack on university in north-west of country

Turkey: Nearly 200 ISIS militants killed in retaliation for Istanbul bombing

Islamic jihadists kidnap three Americans in Baghdad. By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: Kidnapping infidels and releasing them for ransom or enslaving them, as well as killing them if that option is deemed most advantageous for the Muslims, is fully sanctioned in Islamic law: “As for the captives, the amir [ruler] has the choice of taking the most beneficial action of four possibilities: the first to put them to death by cutting their necks; the second, to enslave them and apply the laws of slavery regarding their sale and manumission; the third, to ransom them in exchange for goods or prisoners; and fourth, to show favor to them and pardon them. Allah, may he be exalted, says, ‘When you encounter those [infidels] who deny [the Truth=Islam] then strike [their] necks’ (Qur’an sura 47, verse 4)” — Abu’l-Hasan al-Mawardi, al-Ahkam as-Sultaniyyah (The Laws of Islamic Governance), trans. by Dr. Asadullah Yate, (London), Ta-Ha Publishers Ltd., 1996, p. 192.

ISIS massacres 300 and kidnaps at least 400 including women and children during attack on government-held city

Worth Reading: Female al-Azhar prof: Allah allows Muslims to rape non-Muslim women
The Islamic University Obama lauded. ~Bob

'It's practically impossible to integrate Muslims into Western Europe,' says Czech president as he blames Islamic culture for Cologne sex attacks

Muslim stabs Israeli mother of six to death in her home

Multiculturalism: 15 Year Old Boy Was Stabbed To Death By Arab Migrant Because He Was Protecting Young Girl From Sex Assault

Germany: 1st suspect held over Cologne sex assaults: Algerian Muslim asylum-seeker

Obama Cites 'Smart Diplomacy' in Gaining Hostages' Release
Excerpt: More like, "brilliant" diplomacy" -- if he were working for Iran. Alas, he's supposedly working for the United States, which makes him our problem. I really hope the president decides to work for a used car dealership in the Chicago area after he leaves office. (Ahh, gee, diplomacy?  I thought he paid their way out with $1.7 billion executive order....which does set Americans abroad up for kidnapping for ransom.  Heck, with all the illegals HERE, might set Americans up for kidnapping for ransom in the US. --Barb)

Leading Muslim Scholar: Gender Equality Against Islam – Women Only Fit to Deliver Children
Must be why women over 40 shot and thrown in ditches....Barb

The Truth about Huma Abedin that Media Matters Doesn’t Want America to See
Excerpt: “Still don’t believe Media Matters functions as a propaganda machine to aid and abet Hillary Clinton’s political aspirations? Just  read its response to a Vanity Fair article titled Is Huma Abedin Hillary Clinton’s Secret Weapon or Her Next Big Problem?
The left-wing attack machine wasted no time in posting an article with false information and smears in order to protect the Clinton campaign.

Cracking Down On Talk of 'Rapefugees,' Facebook Has Become The World's Most Dangerous Censor
Excerpt: A friend of mine whose parents grew up in East Germany once told me that the Stasi would have loved Facebook. “Millions of people voluntarily offering up their personal lives, their addresses, their photos,” she said. “The Stasi had to force people to do that!”

Davos Boss Warns Refugee Crisis Could Be Precursor To Something Much Bigger
Excerpt: As the crash in commodities prices spreads economic woe across the developing world, Europe could face a wave of migration that will eclipse today’s refugee crisis, says Klaus Schwab, executive chairman of the World Economic Forum.  “Look how many countries in Africa, for example, depend on the income from oil exports,” Schwab said in an interview ahead of the WEF’s 46th annual meeting, in the Swiss resort of Davos. “Now imagine 1 billion inhabitants, imagine they all move north.”

Pennsylvania university searching for PC replacement for “Crusader” nickname. By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: This is just another indication of the all-pervasive fact that the West has lost its cultural confidence, its pride in its history, and its willingness to defend its heritage. The Crusades were actually a late and small-scale defensive response to 450 years of Islamic jihad aggression, but the administrators at Susquehanna University don’t know that, and wouldn’t care if they did. Nor are they in the least bit curious about why their predecessors chose the Crusader nickname in the first place; those people were all racists, doncha know, and now we’re enlightened.

Worth Reading: Dear Donald. By Tom Kratman
Excerpt: Dear Donald: ... My first bit of totally unsolicited advice, in any event, is don’t ever again say anything even remotely like your alleged belief that your five years of military high school gave you more military training than someone who actually served.1 The sound you hear in the background whenever this comes up is the yawning of a million veterans, who just might have voted for you, deciding to sit this election out. It is preposterous nonsense, insulting to men and women who actually did serve, and, far worse, if you actually believe it, which I hope you do not, it is a very strong indicator that you’re completely unfit to be commander in chief because you will not know, and will refuse to admit, what you do not know. (Tom Kratman is a retired USA LtCol, an occasional contributor to this blog, and an outstand author of military science fiction, including the A Desert Called Peace series. I expect that in 20 years they will move his novel Caliphate to the history section. However, I will not vote for Trump, as I think he would be as big a disaster as Hillary, though in a different way. ~Bob)

Excerpt:  Real estate billionaire Donald Trump gave Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel $50,000 in December 2010, just months before hinting to the media he is seriously contemplating a bid to be the Republican Party's 2012 presidential nominee.

Trump on Hillary

Like Obama? You'll love Trump! Trump on Obama. By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Excerpt: April 15, 2009 is largely seen as the birth date of the Tea Party movement. Here’s what Trump was saying that day about President Obama: TRUMP: I think he’s sort of a guy that just has a wonderful personality, a good speaker, somebody that people trust. And I also think that the comparison with his predecessor is so different -- it’s so huge that it really has made a great impact on people. I think that he’s really doing a nice job in terms of representation of this country. And he represents such a large part of the country . . . I think he’s doing a really good job. Now, the sad part is that he can’t just do a good job. He’s got to do a great job. Because if he does a good job, that’s not good enough for this country. That’s how bad the country has become. KING: Do you assess him as a champion? TRUMP: Oh, yes, he’s a champion. I mean, he won against all odds. If you would have looked -- when he first announced, people were giving him virtually no chance. And he’s just done something that’s amazing.  He’s totally a champion. (In the founding days of the Tea Party, Donald Trump was exactly what they were fighting against . . . and now some of those adherents have embraced him fully. --Jim Geraghty)

Worth Reading: Who are Trump’s supporters in America? Authoritarians.
Excerpt: So you say you want a daddy for your president? Okay, so maybe you didn’t say it, but on a subliminal level, you may have felt it, especially if you’re a Republican primary voter leaning toward Donald Trump. Such is the finding of a recent national poll unveiled in the current issue of Politico Magazine. The survey’s author, political consultant Matthew MacWilliams, found that Trump supporters tend to be primarily “authoritarians.” .. Republicans don’t have a monopoly on such characteristics or characters — there’s no tyranny like the left’s imposition of absolute equality — but Trump is the only candidate of either party whose support among “authoritarians” was statistically significant in this survey of 1,800 registered voters across all demographics. And none of the usual variables — education, income, gender, age, ideology or religiosity — was significant among likely Trump voters.

Excerpt: At the Republican debate the other night "The Donald" scored big with his liberal friends when he used the tragedy of 9/11 to defend against Ted Cruz's attack on Trump's "big city values".  Trump talk about how New York magnificently re-built after the downing of the Twin Towers. Of course, what Trump didn't say was that "We" rebuilt New York City...the big "WE", as in U.S. taxpayers as George Bush committed $100 billion of taxpayer rebuild infrastructure, to cover the medical bills of first responders, to cover all the many lawsuits, many fraudulent, of those who claimed they were somehow damaged by the tragedy.

I agree: George Will Hints at Going Third-Party if It’s Trump vs Hillary
Excerpt: ... but you would also figure that there would be movement to have a third-party candidate because if the election is Hillary Clinton against Donald Trump, this will be the first election since God knows when, there was no real conservative candidate. And I don’t those of us who have started our political careers, and I cast my vote for Barry Goldwater who valued that classic, creative defeat of his because he took the Republican Party and said henceforth it will be a conservative party. (I never thought I would say it but if it’s Trump vs. Hillary or Sanders I really would have to consider a third-party. Depending of course on who it is. I could easily support Rand Paul in this event. I don't agree with him on all issues but I think he's got integrity. -Steve M. I am a lifelong Republican, working as a volunteer on Nixon's 1960 campaign as a young teen. I volunteered for Goldwater in 1964 before joining the Corps. I was elected to the Massachusetts Senate five times, never defeated in a 4-1 Democrat district. I have followed politics ever since as a lobbyist for associations, as a columnist and a blogger. I have never voted for a Democrat for President. I am still hopeful that people of conservative principles will nominate a conservative over Trump, who has supported liberal Democrats, single payer health care, the Dreamers, big government and progressive policies all his career. But if you RINOs in conservative clothing nominate Trump, who has suddenly spouted conservative principles for the last four months for the first time, I predict Hillary will carry every battleground and every blue state. Here is the ad she will run over and over against Trump: Get used to it--and President Hillary. She should be in jail and the Trumpeters will put her in the White House. ~Bob.)

Cruz Suggests Trump Could Be Democrat
Excerpt: GOP presidential candidate 
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) posted an attack-ad on Twitter before the Democratic debate on Sunday night, “As the ‪#DemDebate begins, Republicans have to wonder which team ‪@realDonaldTrump would play for.” Attached to Cruz’s tweet was a link to a YouTube video, which is a montage of GOP frontrunner Donald Trump praising Democrat frontrunner Hillary Clinton during interviews in the past. “She really works hard,” Trump stated in one of the old interviews. “I think she does a good job.” “They are just really terrific people,” he said of both Bill and Hillary Clinton. “I like them both very much.” (If he gets the nomination, these Trump quotes will be in Hillary's ads. Why Liberals Should Love Donald Trump. By Robert A. Hall ~Bob)

If Obama owned a casino...Trump’s bad bet: How too much debt drove his biggest casino aground

Correction: Apparently the Beck "Tweet from Trump" saying he voted for Obama is a fake. There is a site where you can make fake Trump tweets. Scum. Hard to verify all the memes I see. Sorry.  ~Bob

Glenn Beck still thinks Trump voted for Obama
Excerpt: Here is why I believe Donald Trump did, in fact, vote for Barack Obama in 2008: 1. He was a registered democrat when he cast the vote. Trump had been a registered democrat for 7 years by the time the 2008 election came around. 2. This doesn’t guarantee that Trump voted for Obama of course. However, registered democrats in New York voted for Obama by a 91% to 8% margin. So, if Trump was in that 8%, he was quite the outlier. 3. He remained in the democratic party for almost another year after casting the vote. 4. In the decade leading up to the vote, he was a dedicated Democrat, with the only exception being his flirtation with the Independence (Reform) Party in 1999-2000. Incidentally, in this period, large parts of his platform were considerably to the left of Hillary Clinton, or Barack Obama. In fact, I don’t believe even Bernie Sanders has ever proposed a wealth tax on what is in your bank account. 5. In the year leading up to the vote, he spoke favorably about Hillary Clinton, telling Wolf Blitzer “I think Hillary would do a good job." Obviously, it is theoretically possible for someone that thinks Hillary would be a good president to vote against Obama. But to paraphrase Donald: “Not a lot of Republican votes come out of blue state democrats that support Hillary Clinton.” 6. He was among the fiercest critics of the Bush administration. Yes, now it’s hard to believe that he would have voted for Obama, but in 2008 he had spent several years speaking just as negatively about Bush. He called him “a terrible president, perhaps the worst president in the history of this country.” 7. It’s not just that he called Bush a “disaster” many times. It’s why he called him a disaster: Iraq. He called the invasion of Iraq “one of the worst decisions ever made” saying it would have been a “wonderful thing” if he had been impeached because of the war. In fact, he was arguing for the war related impeachment of Bush just two weeks before he cast his presidential vote. 8. Given his opinion on Iraq, consider Trump’s available choices as he looked back: one candidate on record opposing the war, one candidate on record passionately supporting “one of the worst decisions ever made.” Why wouldn’t he vote for Obama? 9. Similarly, given his opinion on Iraq, consider Trump’s available choices as he looked forward: one candidate on record saying he would end the war, the other on record saying he would escalate it. Why wouldn’t he vote for Obama? 10. He continued to praise Obama after the election telling Larry King “Here's a man that not only got elected, I think he's doing a really good job.” 11. He gushed about Obama in his 2009 book: “His comments have led me to believe that he understands how the economy works on a comprehensive level. He has also surrounded himself with very competent people, and that’s the mark of a strong leader.” 12. He supported Obama’s first main policy push, the stimulus, saying it was “what we need” while praising Obama’s for “building infrastructure, building great projects, putting people to work in that sense.” 13. He supported Obama’s efforts to fix the banks including to potentially “nationalize” them. “I do agree with what they're doing with the banks. Whether they fund them or nationalize them, it doesn't matter.” 14. Looking back at this period, he described himself as Obama’s "biggest cheerleader." 15. Trump’s argument is that he raised money for McCain, so obviously he supported him. Is this really a standard Donald feels comfortable with? Does that mean he also supported John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy, Anthony Weiner and Eliot Spitzer? 16. Immediately following the passage of Obamacare, while even moderate republicans coalesced around its repeal, Donald Trump made a maximum donation to the campaign of Harry Reid. Reid was one of the few vulnerable democrats able to hold on to power in the Tea Party wave election of 2010. 17. Speaking of the Tea Party wave, put yourself in that moment again. Hope for constitutional preferences was renewed. Hundreds of thousands of people were gathering all across the country and in Washington DC for Restoring Honor. Conservatives celebrated the biggest wave in a century. One month after that election, Donald Trump gave $50,000 to Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel. Do I believe Donald Trump voted for Barack Obama in 2008? Yes. Yes, I do.

Interesting: Revealed: What Donald Trump Said About Obama In 2009 Will Make You Question Everything
Excerpt: Presidential candidate Donald Trump, who is polling near the top of the Republican field, has had surprisingly complimentary things to say about Barack Obama in the past. ... Trump said he believed Obama had “the mark of a strong leader” with an understanding of the economy.

Sarah Palin’s rambling, remarkable and at times hard to understand endorsement of Donald Trump. By Chris Cillizza

Important: IG: Some emails on Clinton's server were beyond top secret
Excerpt: WASHINGTON (AP) — Some of the classified emails found on former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's home server were even more sensitive than top secret, according to an inspector general for the intelligence community. Inspector General Charles I. McCullough sent a letter to lawmakers last Friday saying that several dozen additional classified emails have been found, including ones containing information from so-called "special access programs." Intelligence officials say special access programs have a higher classification than top secret because they are about highly sensitive programs and could reveal sources of information. (No one has accused the AP of being part of any vast right-wing conspiracy.  This also explains why the FBI is taking it so seriously.  Special access programs are what we know as "named" programs and operations [Operation Overlord, for example]. There is no possible way for such information to be "unknown" to be classified by anyone with access to it. Also, the Clinton campaign’s complaint that this is an "Inspector General working with Republicans" is bogus as he was almost certainly promoted to that job within the last 7 years–which would make him an Obama appointee, not a Republican. I added emphasis. --Ron P.)


Eileen Myles Wants Men to Take a Hike
Excerpt: You supported Hillary Clinton in 2008, but you wrote she wasn’t really a feminist until she was losing. Are you supporting her today? You know, I’ve grown to love Barack Obama. Hillary is no Bernie Sanders. But she’s a politician, and she understands Congress. And I think with that kind of twisted beauty, she could lead our country. I want a ‘‘she’’ in the White House now. (Liberals wanted a black in the White House, any black who could win, regardless of experience, competence or integrity. Now they want a woman in the White House on the same terms. Plumbing trumps integrity or ability. ~Bob)

Worth Reading: Seven Bad Habits of Highly Progressive People. By John C. Goodman
Excerpt: It’s been 50 years since the War on Poverty was launched and after all that time and trillions of dollars spent about one of every seven people in the country is still living below the poverty line. Everyone on the right and the left seems to agree: in the war on poverty, poverty is clearly winning. So what should be done? You may have noticed that Paul Ryan and the Republican presidential candidates were guests of the Jack Kemp Center in North Carolina the other day, trotting out their ideas on how to combat poverty. But what about the Democrats? Unfortunately, there is no Democratic Jack Kemp. There is no national Democrat who is at all visible who appears to give a hoot about anyone who is poor.

Not verified: Bill Clinton's secret lover calls Hillary evil and heartless in open letter

The Way Out Of Obamacare. By Sally Pipes
Excerpt: The next challenge for Republicans is to coalesce around a single replacement plan that will, unlike Obamacare, lower costs while empowering patients. Fortunately, as I note in my new book The Way Out of Obamacare, they’re already starting to do so.

Interesting take: Winners and losers from the fourth Democratic presidential debate. By Chris Cillizza, Washington Post
Excerpt: Winners... More than anything he said, though, it was the passion and disruption that Sanders oozed from every pore over the two hours that should push Democrats on the fence about the race into his camp. Sanders effectively positioned himself as the anti-status-quo candidate, a very good position to have in this electoral environment.

This is the most positive discussion of the actual facts of racism in this nation that I have ever seen.  I recommend it most strongly. BTW, does it say there is no racism left?  Of course not, and anyone who believes that all racism, all sexism, all homophobia, all forms of bias against others can be eliminated from human society is dreaming.  The question has never been the attainment of perfection, but of continuous improvement towards the great majority of citizens ready to respect everyone else.  See what the commentator has to say about this. -Del (Essay: Racism in America by Robert A. Hall
I include an extensive bibliography of books and articles I have read on the subject. ~Bob)

Social Justice Warriors hurt poor: Walmart Closes LA Store Over $15 Minimum Wage

Worth Reading: The Two Democratic Parties. By Jim Geraghty
Excerpt: Members of the Democratic base believe they’ve been given a raw deal by life. Whether or not they actually are poor (many are), they feel poor, and they feel that they’re barred from changing their circumstances. They believe they’ve been victimized by sexism, racism, and all manner of social discrimination. Their circumstances are a result of malevolence from powerful forces in American life, and not a predictable consequence of their own life choices. They could have and should been great successes in life, but they were stymied at every turn by malignant forces out to keep them down. If it wasn’t their teacher and their schools failing to recognize their great potential, then it was their bosses and their employers. Cops hassle them for no reason. The only remedy they see is for the government to give them things that they find too expensive: higher education, health care, child care – all of that should be free. ... Sanders is closer to what the base wants, Clinton is closer to what the elites want.

Feingold all in on Obama nuclear deal with Iran. By M.D. Kittle 
Excerpt:  Former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold spent part of his first interview of the election year defending President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran — a deal most Americans are leery about, to say the least. The Democrat, who is running against U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson to reclaim the seat he lost in the 2010 Republican revolution, said it’s only right to talk about the “great things the president has done.”

Supreme Court agrees to review Obama immigration plan
VA Secretly Paid Exec Who Threatened Whistleblower $86,000 To Quit
Read this whole story while you are not near any stone or concrete surfaces, because you may get the urge to bang your head on something solid from frustration after you take in everything it tells us about how the VA can't manage to fire anyone no matter what their record, and instead pays them off with big chunks of our dollars.  This is so damn stupid that it makes me want to scream out loud.  Or wish I could go back in time and join the VA management staff many years ago and rake in big bucks and great benefits while not really working much, and maybe harassing women employees and bullying others for the fun of it all. And they still claim they have enough tools to deal with bad employees.... how can they say that with a straight face when things like this go on?  Either they don't have the tools or they don't have the cojones to use them.  In the latter case, they need to be retired and get someone in the job who can actually manage.  That much is owed to both our vets and the taxpayers. --Del

Worth Reading: We Are Sick of Paying the Price for Elitists to Feel Smug . By Kurt Schlichter  
Excerpt: A lot of us complain that our elite betters are ignoring our concerns, but nothing could be further from the truth. They have heard us all right. They have gotten together to come up with a solution to the many problems we have brought to their attention. And that solution is for us to shut up and keep sucking up whatever abuse they choose to heap upon us. It’s all about empowering the elite to feel smug. And about sticking us normal with the check. Upset about establishment virtue signaling that requires us to take limitless numbers of Third World denizens into our country? Mad when they take our jobs? Of course, aliens don’t take the elite’s jobs – for example, we lawyers get to bar people who don’t pass the Bar from horning in on our action, but if you’re an American who wants to build houses for a decent wage, well, too bad and so sad! ... Oh, and if one of them gets hammered and uses his shiny new illegal alien driver’s license to ram his beat up Chevy into a car packed with your son and his friends, that’s a small price to pay for the elite redlining its collective sense of moral self-satisfaction. And if an illegal rapes and murders your daughter, well, better an American woman die than some dreamer’s dream of easy pickings be denied. (This is why Trump (ironically) and Sanders are doing so well. Cordially, Larry Greenberg)

Worth Reading: Blacks and the Confederacy. By Walter E. Williams
Excerpt: Last July, Anthony Hervey, an outspoken black advocate for the Confederate flag, was killed in a car crash. Arlene Barnum, a surviving passenger in the vehicle, told authorities and the media that they had been forced off the road by a carload of "angry young black men" after Hervey, while wearing his Confederate kepi, stopped at a convenience store en route to his home in Oxford, Mississippi. His death was in no small part caused by the gross level of ignorance, organized deceit and anger about the War of 1861. Much of the ignorance stems from the fact that most Americans believe the war was initiated to free slaves, when in truth, freeing slaves was little more than an afterthought. I want to lay out a few quotations and ask what you make of them. (Dr. Williams, who grew up poor and black in the Philadelphia projects, in a brilliant economist and former chair of the economics department at George Mason University. His book Race and Economics is well worth reading. ~Bob)

Worth Reading: What Are Elections For?. By Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Too many nations, in desperate times, especially after the established authorities have discredited themselves and forfeited the trust of the people, have turned to some new and charismatic leader, who ended up turning a dire situation into an utter catastrophe. The history of the 20th century provides all too many examples, whether on a small scale that led to the massacre in Jonestown in 1978 or the earlier succession of totalitarian movements that took power in Russia in 1917, Italy in 1922 and Germany a decade later. Eric Hoffer's shrewd insight into the success of charismatic leaders was that the "quality of ideas seems to play a minor role," What matters, he pointed out, "is the arrogant gesture, the complete disregard of the opinion of others, the singlehanded defiance of the world." Is that the emotional release that Republican voters will be seeking when they begin voting in the primaries? If so, Donald Trump will be their man. But if the sobering realities of life and the need for mature and wise leadership in dangerous times is uppermost in their minds, they will have to look elsewhere. Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305. His website is To find out more about Thomas Sowell and read features by other Creators Syndicate columnists and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at

Worth Reading: Still Polarizing After All These Years. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: Polls confirm that Obama is the most polarizing president in recent memory. There is little middle ground: supporters worship him; detractors in greater number seem to vehemently dislike him. Why then does the president, desperate for some sort of legacy, continue to embrace polarization? A few hours before delivering that State of the Union, President Obama met with rapper Kendrick Lamar. Obama announced that Lamar’s hit “How Much a Dollar Cost” was his favorite song of 2015. The song comes from the album To Pimp a Butterfly; the album cover shows a crowd of young African-American men massed in front of the White House. In celebratory fashion, all are gripping champagne bottles and hundred-dollar bills; in front of them lies the corpse of a white judge, with two Xs drawn over his closed eyes. So why wouldn't the president’s advisors at least have advised him that such a gratuitous White House sanction might be incongruous with a visual message of racial hatred? Was Obama seeking cultural authenticity, of the sort he seeks by wearing a T-shirt, with his baseball cap on backwards and thumb up?

If they had a way to count illegal guns owned by thugs and gang-bangers, I think the rankings would change. ~Bob

Obama arms the Dreamers: ‘Fast & Furious’ rifle capable of taking down helicopter found in 'El Chapo' cache
Excerpt: A .50-caliber rifle found at Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman’s hideout in Mexico was funneled through the gun-smuggling investigation known as Fast and Furious, sources confirmed Tuesday to Fox News. A .50-caliber is a massive rifle that can stop a car or, as it was intended, take down a helicopter.

Satire: U.S. Air Force Sells A-10s to ISIS
Excerpt: The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) received twelve A-10 Thunderbolt II aircraft this morning, as the U.S. Air Force divests itself of the venerable attack jet. “I’ve flown the A-10 my entire career,” said Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh, “so I’m well aware how hard our Air Force has tried to kill this aircraft over the past few decades.  But by selling all 300 A-10s to ISIS, we can fund the purchase of one, possibly even two more F-35s.” Abu Sayaaf al-Ramadi, a local ISIS warlord, spoke highly of the deal. “Praise Allah!  We now have the finest close air support aircraft in the world!  Excellent loiter time, superb visibility, and man, can it take a beating!” al-Ramadi said.

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