Monday, July 5, 2010

Political Digest July 5, 2010

I post articles because I believe they will be of interest, not because I agree with every—or even any—opinion in them.

Great Article: Winston Churchill’s July 4 Message to America
Excerpt: Here was Churchill’s moral realism on display. Most everyone expected a German invasion of Britain at any moment, a trial whose outcome was uncertain, but which certainly would cause unspeakable suffering and destruction. Nevertheless, with a keen sense of the transcendent meaning of the moment, Churchill summoned his nation to find the courage required for survival. “This is no time for doubt or weakness,” he said. “It is the supreme hour to which we have been called.” As Churchill described the attack against Britain’s former ally, the House listened quietly, stunned and enthralled. Churchill was overcome with emotion. So were members of Parliament: They burst into cheers, relieved not only that French warships would not be used against Great Britain, but that they had a prime minister who would not allow their island nation to perish without a fight. The country overwhelmingly supported the decision. Churchill’s daring action sent shock waves throughout the American foreign policy establishment, particularly among the appeasers in the White House and State Department. Liberal delusions about the limited nature of the Nazi threat, the wisdom of isolationism, and the impotence of British democracy were beginning to unravel. Two months later, Roosevelt sent Churchill the warships.

'1000s' of Russian spies in U.S., surpassing Cold War record
The results of institutionalizing weakness as a policy. Excerpt: The Russians are coming? The Russians are here. America is infested with more Russian spies than at any point in history, say former intelligence agents who spoke with The Post. "I would say there are a few thousand here," said Boris Korczak, a former double agent who worked for the CIA, spying on the KGB from 1973-1980. That's because each mole is a long shot, and the Russians want to maximize their odds. "Out of 1,000 spies, one or two will perform, will get access to our nuclear secrets," Korczak said.

The Spy Who Loved Chavez
Excerpt: Pelaez, who along with her husband was among the 11 people arrested this week as part of the Russian spy ring, would be something of a late ’60s museum piece, if her beliefs didn’t now give urgent new meaning to the term “conviction journalism.” I spoke to her one-time editor and current columnist at El Diario, Gerson Borrero, who described her as “a pain in the ass” and “not my favorite colleague over the past 20 years” but said her arrest came as “a complete surprise. If you had told me that she’d been spying for Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, or China, I might have believed it, but Russia? I never heard her talk about Russia or the Soviet Union. Ever.” Since Pelaez’s arrest, the emails have been pouring into El Diario. “Fifty percent of our readers are saying that they knew she was a communist,” Borrero said. “The other 50 percent say that she’s being set up by the U.S. government to silence her.” I called the Spy Museum in Washington, D.C., to get some perspective from its in-house historian, Mark Stout. “Most of the major intelligence agencies have a history, at least in the past, of having used journalistic cover,” he said.

Narco sub is no rumor, authorities discover
Excerpt: It has long been the stuff of drug-trafficking legend, but federal authorities announced on Saturday that they have helped seize the first known and fully operational submarine built by drug traffickers to smuggle tons of cocaine from South America toward the United States. The diesel-electric powered submarine was captured in an Ecuadorian jungle waterway leading to the Pacific Ocean, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. The sub, which is about 100 feet long and equipped with a periscope, was seized before its maiden voyage by Ecuadorian authorities armed with DEA intelligence. The discovery is seen by authorities as a game-changer in terms of the challenge it poses not only to fighting drugs but to national security as well. "The submarine's nautical range, payload capacity, and quantum leap in stealth have raised the stakes for the counter-drug forces and the national security community alike," said DEA Andean Regional Director Jay Bergman. It is unclear how far the camouflage-painted submarine could have traveled, but it is believed to be sophisticated enough to cover thousands of miles — and certainly to make it to the North American coast. "There is a sense of urgency for naval engineers and submariners to take a look at this thing and dissect it and take it apart and figure out what its real capabilities were," Bergman said. "The police have seized this structure, but the people that need to get on there are naval engineers." (Imagine this thing, armed with a torpedo or two, sitting quietly in San Diego Harbor, or maybe near an oil drilling platform. Here's a free win-win-win-win: The Democrats want more government control and taxes; Republicans want more law enforcement and a balanced budget; conservatives want a secure border and a strong national defense; liberals want enhanced freedoms that someone else pays for; Libertarians want to be left alone to do as they damn well please. Therefore, let's legalize most of the recreational drugs and tax the hell out of them. Without the profit margin provided by being an illegal product, the Narco bosses will have to re-invest in normal businesses (subject to taxes AND growing the economies of several countries), we eliminate the need to catch, try, convict, and then house 85% or so of the druggies (which saves a bundle), we generate a vast sum in taxes (to pay down the debt), and it requires a vast new bureaucracy to administer (employing more government workers AND extending government control of private pursuits), and there is no longer a profitable market for submarine travel to the US (so any sub found is CLEARLY an enemy and can be blown up). Everybody would be happy except the nannies, and they are already unhappy. The more I think about this, the more I find I'm only half kidding. --Ron P. Politically unpopular, but the only real solution. And it would free up funds for drug treatment. Currently, the only way to support a serious drug habit is to sell drugs, sell your body or steal. Having been victimized by someone close to me, I’d kill all drug dealers if I could. I can’t. so I’d support eliminating their profits. ~Bob)

Illinois Stops Paying Its Bills, but Can’t Stop Digging Hole
“We gotta get out of this place, if it’s the last thing we ever do.” Excerpt: Even by the standards of this deficit-ridden state, Illinois’s comptroller, Daniel W. Hynes, faces an ugly balance sheet. Precisely how ugly becomes clear when he beckons you into his office to examine his daily briefing memo. Payback Time He picks the papers off his desk and points to a figure in red: $5.01 billion. “This is what the state owes right now to schools, rehabilitation centers, child care, the state university — and it’s getting worse every single day,” he says in his downtown office. Mr. Hynes shakes his head. “This is not some esoteric budget issue; we are not paying bills for absolutely essential services,” he says. “That is obscene.” For the last few years, California stood more or less unchallenged as a symbol of the fiscal collapse of states during the recession. Now Illinois has shouldered to the fore, as its dysfunctional political class refuses to pay the state’s bills and refuses to take the painful steps — cuts and tax increases — to close a deficit of at least $12 billion, equal to nearly half the state’s budget. Then there is the spectacularly mismanaged pension system, which is at least 50 percent underfunded and, analysts warn, could push Illinois into insolvency if the economy fails to pick up. States cannot go bankrupt, technically, but signs of fiscal crackup are easy to see. Legislators left the capital this month without deciding how to pay 26 percent of the state budget. The governor proposes to borrow $3.5 billion to cover a year’s worth of pension payments, a step that would cost about $1 billion in interest. And every major rating agency has downgraded the state; Illinois now pays millions of dollars more to insure its debt than any other state in the nation.

Saudi king: "Two states in region do not deserve to exist: Israel and Iran"
Excerpt: This, of course, comes after reports that Saudi Arabia granted Israel permission to use its airspace to strike Iran's nuclear facilities. Taken together, the two stories make clear that the Saudis' purported willingness to cooperate with the Israelis against a common enemy does not mean Israel is any safer in the Saudi vision for the region in the longer run -- even after Israel were to assume all the risks (including jihadist retaliation) for thwarting Iran's nuclear ambitions

Radical Muslims threaten to kill Christian man in Bekasi
Didn’t get the “Islam is a religion of peace” memo. Excerpt: A banner depicting a Christian with a noose around his neck is hung outside a mosque with these words: “This man deserves the death penalty!” Andreas Sanau, together with Henry Sutanto, is accused of organising mass baptisms. “The government must protect all citizens from anarchist action as mandated by the constitution,” says secretary of the Communion of Indonesian Churches.

Police: 8 killed in Thailand's restive south
Didn’t get the memo. Excerpt: Suspected Muslim insurgents detonated roadside bombs that killed eight people, including one civilian, in two separate attacks in Thailand's restive south, police said Friday. A bomb explosion in Yala province on Friday killed three soldiers in a pickup truck who were sent to fix a water pipe in a village in Yaha district, said police Col. Sawas Tiawirat. On Thursday evening, suspected insurgents detonated a bomb and then shot at security forces on a patrol in Narathiwat province, killing a soldier, two security rangers, a village security guard and a village official, said police Capt. Pairat Kiatcharoensiri.

Member Of UN Commission On The Status Of Women Set To Stone Woman To Death!
Iran, a member in good standing at the UN Commission On The Status Of Women, is getting ready to stone a woman to death. A 43-year-old Iranian woman is facing death by stoning unless an international campaign launched by her children forces the authorities to quash what her lawyer calls a bogus conviction. In a case that highlights the growing use of the death penalty in a country that has already executed more than 100 people this year, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani was convicted in May 2006 of conducting an “illicit relationship outside marriage.”

Pakistanis blame US after shrine attack kills 42
Muslims murder Muslims? Blame America…and the Jews. Excerpt: Even those who blamed others saw an American hand in the attacks. Arifa Moen, 32, a teacher in Multan, said Washington "is encouraging Indians and Jews to carry out attacks" in Pakistan.

Liberty and American Exceptionalism
The law of unintended consequences. Obama’s fostering the rise of excellent conservative black writers and thinkers like Blackwell, Williams and Sowell, proving that not all blacks say “Yessir Massa,” when the left speaks, may go far to help Americans judge people as individuals, not as groups. Excerpt: On the Fourth of July, we don’t only celebrate the birth of our nation. We celebrate American exceptionalism—everything that makes the United States the greatest nation on earth. In celebrating this, we reject President Obama’s blueprint for the kind of country he seeks to make us. On July 4, 1776, fifty-six dedicated patriots resolved to risk everything in the hope of a new beginning. Elected to represent colonists from across the thirteen British colonies on the American continent, they decided to embark upon a grand experiment, to form a self-governing democratic republic. They were risking their lives. Had they failed, they would have been hanged as traitors, their lands confiscated by the Crown, their fortunes forfeited, and their families left disgraced and destitute. Yet they succeeded, and the freest, safest, and prosperous nation in the world was born. We don’t just celebrate the historical fact of America’s birth. When we celebrate Independence Day, we celebrate everything for which the United States stands.

Why Cloward-Piven Will Eat Itself
Excerpt: Long considered a tool for fomenting socialist revolution in America, the "Cloward-Piven Strategy" was a sociopolitical theory developed by left-wing ivory tower-dwellers Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven. I'm sure the foil hat-wearing adherents of this line of thinking will complain here about my oversimplification of the plan and general lack of nuance, but basically, it seeks to undermine the (American) government by overloading said government with dependents needing welfare. Apparently, this will force the government into recognizing that there are a lot of dependents out there (artificially created, no doubt), which would inevitably lead to the United States' government establishing a guaranteed national income or some such poppycock. You see, folks? This is what happens when you let sociologists from the Ivy League be taken seriously. Sadly, many in the Democratic Party have adopted this strategy as a way to build their base and solidify their political power, believing that Cloward and Piven knew what the hell they were talking about and that, by some miracle, crashing the national economy by using welfare and other government payout programs as a tool would bring about even larger government. This seems a clear-cut case of throwing the logical conclusion to the four breezes so we can focus on our much-wanted outcome: a socialist fantasy-land for all the little boys and girls everywhere across the land. Now, I may not be an Ivy League professor or even a lowly graduate, but it seems to me that bloating government and overloading already burdened bureaucracies would totally crash them. As in: they're over. Kaput. No existen más.

White House Enacts Rules Inhibiting Media From Covering Oil Spill
Can’t be true. After all, this is “the most transparent administration in history.” Excerpt: The White House Thursday enacted stronger rules to prevent the media from showing what's happening with the oil spill in the Gulf Coast. CNN's Anderson Cooper reported that evening, "The Coast Guard today announced new rules keeping photographers and reporters and anyone else from coming within 65 feet of any response vessel or booms out on the water or on beaches -- 65 feet." He elaborated, "Now, in order to get closer, you have to get direct permission from the Coast Guard captain of the Port of New Orleans. You have to call up the guy. What this means is that oil-soaked birds on islands surrounded by boom, you can't get close enough to take that picture." As the segment continued, Cooper expressed disgust with this rule repeating several times, "We are not the enemy here" .... This time, however, we're not talking about BP. We're talking about the government, a new a rule announced today backed by the force of law and the threat of fines and felony charges, a rule that will prevent reporters and photographers and anyone else from getting anywhere close to booms and oil-soaked wildlife and just about any place we need to be. By now, you're probably familiar with cleanup crews stiff-arming the media, private security blocking cameras, ordinary workers clamming up, some not even saying who they're working for because they're afraid of losing their jobs. BP has said again and again that's not their policy. Yet, again and again, it has happened. And we have seen it. ... Violators could face a fine of $40,000 and Class D felony charges.

Solar Influences
Excerpt: It is certainly striking that since the later part of the 19th century and throughout the 20th century there has been a general increase in the Earth’s global average temperature at the same time that the strength of the solar cycle was increasing in intensity as measured by the number of sunspots. In the last half of the 20th century four out of the five most intense solar cycles occurred (the second largest cycle was around 1780) including the strongest ever which was in the 1950’s. Christensen linked these two together in what appeared to be a pleasing way. However, a few years after the work was published others found flaws in the way the final four (out of 24) data points were plotted. In Christensen’s paper the length of the solar cycle decreased between 1950 – 1990 with the last data point showing that the cycle length shortened at the same time that the recent global warming period started (post 1980). When this was corrected the concordance between the solar cycle length and the earth’s rising temperature broke down as it became apparent that the length of the solar cycle showed no trend as the earth’s temperature rose post-1980.

Liberal PBS donor tries to squelch Iraq troop surge documentary from airing
Confusion on the left. Excerpt: The film, produced by the Institute for the Study of War, takes a look at the Iraq War from a unique perspective and has received a number of favorable reviews. The documentary’s website summarizes, “The Surge: the Untold Story is the only documentary of its kind offering audiences a look into the real story of the Surge in Iraq, as told by top U.S. military commanders. These never-before-seen interviews move beyond Washington politics to tell the ground truth of a failing mission transformed into one of the most successful military operations in a generation of war fighting. This documentary honors the sacrifice, courage and ingenuity of military members in nearly impossible circumstances.” Originally WHYY planned to feature a televised panel discussion along with the initial airing of the film. Marilyn Ware, a noted philanthropist and former ambassador to Finland, was set to host the panel composed of such influential people as Kimberly Kagan, Elizabeth Cheney, Ret. General Jack Keane, Ret. Lieutenant General James Dubik, New York Times reporter Michael Gordon, and Colonel David Sutherland. After protest from Curtis Thomsen, a loud liberal donor, and a reportedly slim RSVP list, WHYY has scrapped the panel discussion but will still be airing the film. WHYY spokesman, Art Ellis, told The Daily Caller that the station might consider hosting a panel again later in the year. “It is basically a situation where PBS is doing the right thing by airing the show but missing the point by canceling the panel,” said the documentary’s writer and director Jason Meath. “WHYY’s intentions are good, the results just are not all the way there.” The mover of this chain of events, former psychology professor Curtis Thomsen, has been sending myriad emails and requests to WHYY demanding they stop the program from airing. “All the members of that panel were from the Institute for the Study of War,” Thomsen told The Daily Caller. “Even though they say they are nonpartisan it is a very right wing organization.” Thomsen is certain that Republicans are in the process of infiltrating WHYY and influencing the network’s content.

Climate legislation aims to reduce pollution, but may also shrink your wallet
Excerpt: Let’s face it, “going green” is trendy. One stroll through Whole Foods is proof enough that eco-friendliness has become a stylish way to shop without guilt. Amateur environmentalists can even order a sustainable sangria or green margarita at some bars. On Tuesday, Obama and 23 senators met to discuss climate legislation originally proposed in 2007. As a result of the bipartisan meeting, Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) offered to weaken the bill by toying with different versions of cap-and-trade. The goal of the Climate and Energy Bill is to reduce pollution that causes global warming – specifically greenhouse gases – and to invest in renewable sources. The bill says this be aided by cap-and-trade. So, what in the polluted world is cap-and-trade? The cap: Major pollution sources (i.e. power plants, factories) would have to limit the amount of harmful gases emitted. If pollution is taxed, companies would be more likely to look for an environmentally-friendly alternative. The trade: Free but limited permits would be issued to some of these large companies. If a company has more pollution than their allotted permits allow, they can either buy or trade permits, or find a way to create clean energy. The cost of converting to alternative energy could come with a jaw-dropping price tag. Some Republicans fear that once companies are forced to buy pollution permits, they will pass this cost to consumers and it will in effect create a national energy tax. According to a study on the bill’s effects, the American Council for Capital Formation and the National Association of Manufacturers speculate the bill will cause a $739 to $2,927 income loss to households by 2020. The study also approximates this loss would rise to $4,022 to $6,752 by 2030.

Governor Brewer activates new food stamp fraud prevention unit
Excerpt: Governor Jan Brewer and the Arizona Department of Economic Security set in motion a new anti-fraud unit effective July 1. The new DES Trafficking Detection Unit will ensure that people obtaining food stamps are not using these benefits illegally. "We have an obligation to taxpayers," said Governor Brewer. "These benefits can only be used by people who are eligible and need help. The State of Arizona will not tolerate any abuse of government benefits. The Nutrition Assistance Program is a necessary part of the safety net, particularly in these difficult times, but these benefits must be used to purchase food. Anything else is illegal." DES denied payments of approximately $9.4 million in Nutrition and Cash Assistance benefits to ineligible clients as a result of investigations conducted by the DES Office of Special Investigations in 2008 and 2009. The TDU, which becomes operational today, will ensure that recipients of nutrition assistance are not trying to convert these benefits into cash, in violation of state and federal law.

Down with Doom: How the World Keeps Defying the Predictions of Pessimists
Excerpt: By then I had begun to notice that this terrible future was not all that bad. In fact every single one of the dooms I had been threatened with had proved either false or exaggerated. The population explosion was slowing down, famine had largely been conquered (except in war-torn tyrannies), India was exporting food, cancer rates were falling not rising (adjusted for age), the Sahel was greening, the climate was warming, oil was abundant, air pollution was falling fast, nuclear disarmament was proceeding apace, forests were thriving, sperm counts had not fallen. And above all, prosperity and freedom were advancing at the expense of poverty and tyranny. I began to pay attention and a few years ago I started to research a book on the subject. I was astounded by what I discovered. Global per capita income, corrected for inflation, had trebled in my lifetime, life expectancy had increased by one third, child mortality had fallen by two-thirds, the population growth rate had halved. More people had got out of poverty than in all of human history before. When I was born, 36% of Americans had air conditioning. Today 79% of Americans below the poverty line had air conditioning. The emissions of pollutants from a car were down by 98%. The time you had to work on the average wage to buy an hour of artificial light to read by was down from 8 seconds to half a second. Not only are human beings wealthier, they are also healthier, wiser, happier, more tolerant, less violent, more equal. Check it out - the data is clear. Yet if anything the pessimists had only grown more certain, shrill and apocalyptic. We were facing the `end of nature', the `coming anarchy', a `stolen future', our `final century' and a climate catastrophe. Why, I began to wonder did the failure of previous predictions have so little impact on this litany? (....) I now see at firsthand how I avoided hearing any good news when I was young. Where are the pressure groups that have an interest in telling the good news? They do not exist. By contrast, the behemoths of bad news, such as Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and WWF, spend hundreds of millions of dollars a year and doom is their best fund-raiser. (I’m on the doom side, but think that it will be caused by the statist like the groups raising funds off of things like global cooling/warming. See:
The Coming Collapse of the American Republic

US officials: Al-Qaida operative tied to NY plot
Excerpt: U.S. counterterrorism officials have linked one of the nation's most wanted terrorists to last year's thwarted plot to bomb the New York City subway system, authorities said Wednesday. Current and former counterterrorism officials said top al-Qaida operative Adnan Shukrijumah met with one of the would-be suicide bombers in a plot that Attorney General Eric Holder called one of the most dangerous since the 9/11 terror attacks. Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn have named Shukrijumah in a draft terrorism indictment but on Wednesday the Justice Department was still discussing whether to cite his role. Some officials feared that the extra attention might hinder efforts to capture him. Shukrijumah's involvement shows how important the subway bombing plot was to al-Qaida's senior leadership. Intelligence officials believe Shukrijumah is one of the top candidates to become al-Qaida's next head of external operations, the man in charge of planning attacks worldwide. Current and former counterterrorism officials discussed the case on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about it. Shukrijumah, 34, has eluded the FBI for years. The Saudi-born terrorist studied at a community college in Florida, but when the FBI showed up to arrest him as a material witness to a terrorism case in 2003, he already had left the country. The U.S. is offering a $5 million reward for information leading to his capture.

What is the Tea Party? A growing state of mind
Excerpt: The portrait that emerges fits a traditional conservative group. The ranks of the Tea Party include somewhat more men than women, and they are more likely to be married and a bit older than the nation as a whole. Residents of the South and West are the most likely to endorse the Tea Party, but it is unmistakably a nationwide movement: 28% in the Midwest and 27% in the East call themselves backers. They are overwhelmingly white and Anglo, although a scattering of Hispanics, Asian Americans and African Americans combine to make up almost one-fourth of their ranks. What unites Tea Party supporters is less their geography or demography than their policy views: a firm conviction that the federal government has gotten too big and too powerful and a fear that the nation faces great peril. Nine in 10 are unhappy with the country's direction and see the federal debt as an ominous threat to its future. Almost as many say neither President Obama nor most members of Congress deserve re-election.

The Pearce “Inquiry
Excerpt: One inquiry into Climategate by a non-skeptic is not a total whitewash. Fred Pearce actually read the emails and makes some important findings. Fred Pearce’s book on Climategate and the events leading up to it (The Climate Files) has just been published. (Pearce kindly sent me a copy.) Pearce has been involved in environmental reporting for the past 15 or so years and, like George Monbiot, is a strong supporter of climate policy. On many points, Pearce (in my opinion, far too readily) accepts Team excuses for their conduct and untrue Team characterizations of scientific issues. Nonetheless, even with this too-ready acceptance of Team rationales, Pearce, like Monbiot, has harsh words for their conduct. Pearce: "The evidence of scientists cutting corners, playing down uncertainties in their calculations and then covering their tracks by being secretive with data and suppressing dissent suggests a systemic problem of scientific sloppiness, collusion and endemic conflicts of interest, but not of outright fraud. (p. 241)" As some (but not enough) readers realize, the hurdle to show “outright fraud” is much higher than to show “cutting corners, playing down uncertainties in their calculations and then covering their tracks by being secretive with data and suppressing dissent suggests a systemic problem of scientific sloppiness, collusion and endemic conflicts of interest” – all of which are issues that the Oxburgh “inquiry” and Penn State “inquiry” should have addressed. Pearce also renders an opinion on the important issue of violation of IPCC rules through the surreptitious exchange between Wahl and Briffa in summer 2006 that led to Wahl inserting language favorable to them that had never sent to external reviewers – the exchanges that were the subject of the “delete all emails” request that Mann told Jones that he would pass on to Wahl.

The Russian Spy We Didn't Catch
Excerpt: I’m sitting in a very spacious apartment, maybe 3,000 square feet, high above Moscow, with expansive views of the city from its large windows. It’s 1992, and I’m being offered chai and cake by Vladimir Lenin’s niece, Olga Ulyanova, who was once the playmate of Stalin’s daughter, Svetlana. She is a revered figure in the Soviet Union. Now 70 and still a member of the Union of Journalists, she has agreed to see me, my translator says, because I’m working on a project with Norman Mailer, a writer admired in her country for his outspokenness against his own. I’m here tracking details about Lee Harvey Oswald’s years in the Soviet Union (1959-1962) and I’m hoping that Olga can give me insight into what the Soviets must have made of Oswald when he defected. In response to one of my questions about Soviet spies, Olga shrugs. All she knows about espionage, she tells me, is that her neighbors are among the most decorated spies. Their story is quite something, she says. Why, they managed to live deep undercover in the United States for 15 years without giving themselves away! I must meet them! In fact, they’re going to stop by later. They’re out at the moment, but she’s left a note under their door. While we wait, she starts to tell me their story. After World War II, the KGB recruited men and women who spoke European languages besides Russian and whose demeanor would allow them to pass in the West. Her neighbors were among them. Originally from the area around Minsk, this couple was married, had a child, and spoke excellent German. During the last years of the 1940s, they were activated, she says. Their child was sent to live with his grandmother. One parent was dispatched into Austria, the other into West Germany. There, they were to begin new lives.

CNN: The Sickness We Face

Stimulus Money Being Used to Subsidize & Bus Mexican Students Across Border for Free Education
Undocumented students. Excerpt: In 1996, The Albuquerque Journal noted that students residing in Mexico have been educated in the United States for free for over 40 years. Judicial Watch investigated this matter of “free” education. For school year 2008-2009, 506 students were transported from the Port of Entry to Deming Public Schools (and this number has been increasing for the past three years). Typically, the students cross the border where a public school bus waits for them and then transports them 30 miles to the schools in Deming. The source of funding for theses students is part of the district allotment which is based on services (busing, English as a second language, etc). Based on an average district enrollment of 5447, total operational cost of $36,254,672, and 460 students bused from the port of entry in 2007-2008, on average $3,061,712.71 was spent on students picked up at the Port of Entry. The law firm handling the request specifically notes that “funding is based on total services for all the students in the district and is not calculated on a child by child method. Therefore, we do not have the information of the funding by any specific child.” In essence, if the school is already providing such services, then the additional students may not be costing anything extra; but here’s the catch, 460 students is necessarily going to result in a need for more services like additional teachers, additional meals, transportation, special instruction, etc. The amount of additional money is not insignificant especially given that New Mexico will receive $537,047,803 from President Obama’s stimulus plan to “lay the foundation for a generation of education reform and help save thousands of teaching jobs at risk due to state and local budget cuts.” That’s right, the stimulus money will indirectly be funding education for students whose families do not pay taxes.

Assimilation and the Founding Fathers
Excerpt: In his immigration speech on Thursday, President Obama heralded America as a "nation of immigrants" defined not by blood or birth, but by "fidelity to the shared values that we all hold so dear." If only it were so. Left-wing academics and activists spurned assimilation as a common goal long ago. Their fidelity lies with bilingualism (a euphemism for native language maintenance over English-first instruction), identity politics, ethnic militancy and a borderless continent. Obama blames "politics" for the intractable immigration debate. Whose politics? The amnesty mob has taken to ambushing congressional offices this week to scream at lawmakers to choose "reform" (giving a blanket path to citizenship to millions of illegal aliens) or "racism" (their description of any and every legislative measure to stiffen sanctions for and deter the acts of border-jumping, visa-overstaying and deportation-evading). Is there no middle ground for all sides to agree that clearing naturalization application backlogs should take priority over expanding illegal alien benefits, or that tracking and deporting violent illegal alien criminals should take precedence over handing out driver's licenses to illegal aliens, or that streamlining the employee citizenship verification process for businesses (E-verify) and fixing outdated visa tracking databases should come before indiscriminately expanding temporary visa and guest worker programs? Must every response to even the most modest of immigration enforcement measures be "RAAAAACIST"? Further, as I've noted many times over the years when debating both Democrats and Republicans who fall back on empty phrases to justify putting the amnesty cart before the enforcement horse, we are not a "nation of immigrants." This is both a factual error and a warm-and-fuzzy non sequitur. Eighty-five percent of the residents currently in the United States were born here. Yes, we are almost all descendants of immigrants. But we are not a "nation of immigrants." (And the politically correct president certainly wouldn't argue that Native American Indians, Native Alaskans, Native Hawaiians and descendants of black slaves "immigrated" here in any common sense of the word, would he?)

Newt on Obama's Job-Killing Policies

'The Most Brilliant Commander': Ngo Quang Truong
Excerpt: Ngo Quang Truong died of cancer on January 22, 2007, in Fairfax, Virginia. Shortly after his death, the Virginia Legislature passed a Joint Resolution "Celebrating the Life of Ngo Quang Truong." This singular honor for a man who came to this country in 1975 was clearly justified by the sacrifices that Truong made in defense of his South Vietnamese homeland and the exemplary life that he lived both before and after coming to his adopted country. He was considered one of the most honest and capable generals of the South Vietnamese army during the long war in Southeast Asia. General Bruce Palmer described him in his book The 25-Year War as a "tough, seasoned, fighting leader" and "probably the best field commander in South Vietnam." General Creighton Abrams, who commanded American military operations in Vietnam from 1968 to 1972, told subordinates that he thought General Truong was capable of commanding an American division.

No community organizers in Fred’s time, I guess
If I wished to punish a province, I would have it governed by philosophers. --Frederick The Great

1 comment:

  1. TartanMarine:

    I have no idea HOW you pick so many GOOD stories to cover (out of so many more)...
    I DO know you just don't toss 'em all up in the air, and whichever ones land face UP you post.

    LOVE your essay, too!

    This is better than a formal intel meeting!

    Excellent stuff!

    Carry On!