Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Political Digest for April 6, 2011

I post articles because I think they are of interest. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article. Help your friends and relatives stay informed by passing the digest on.

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

On the Road Again
I will be traveling on business for a bit, but will leave some interesting guest posts for the blog, so check it daily. Note to Chicagoland Thugs. My wife is staying home. She will be busy cleaning the guns and walking the Dobermans, so please don’t bother her.

The Path to Prosperity: Restoring America’s Promise
Rep. Paul Ryan’s GOP Budget proposal. Stand by for the “Borrow and Spend to Buy Votes Party to go nuts. (Formerly they were known as the Tax and Spend party.) ~Bob

Wow: VIDEO: The Manifesto of an Evil Totalitarian Political System
Excerpt: A young woman in Colorado named Ann Barnhardt watched Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) holding forth on television yesterday about the necessity for rolling back the First Amendment in order not to anger Muslims. This did not sit well with her, and she made a two-part video for YouTube expressing her outrage, and vigorously affirming her right to patriotic dissent. She declares herself strongly at the beginning of the first video: “Hello, my name is Ann Barnhardt, and I am apparently one of the very, very last people left in Western Civilization who possesses any quantity of brains and balls simultaneously.” And it gets even better after that. The second video shows her tearing out pages — bookmarked with strips of bacon — from the Koran, and burning them one by one. (Be sure you watch that vid of the woman burning the Koran on YouTube. At the end she gives out her home address and invites the Muslims to come and get her. A saint. She is way intelligent, articulate, funny and brave. –Kate.)

Interview: Ann Barnhardt
Excerpt: I got home from Mass at about 1:30 Sunday afternoon. Sunday was Laetare Sunday, which marks the midway point of Lent. The priest at the parish I attend said repeatedly in his homily that it was a day to relax and enjoy oneself. So I decided to have a fancy sit-down meal. I went to a good Italian place and between my caprese salad and cheese ravioli with a side of meatballs (natch) I pulled out my iPhone for a little light reading. I saw Graham on and knew instantly what I had to do. After lunch, I grabbed the bacon, the glass fire bowl, a fire extinguisher (safety first), and two paperback copies of the Koran for easy burning. I wrote the “Part 1” script in about 45 minutes, took another 30 minutes to choose my passages to “bacon bookmark”, and recorded the clip in one take – but did have to pause when the fire alarm went off. Hate when that happens.

Worth Reading: Political Statistics by Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: When someone gives you a check and the bank informs you that there are insufficient funds, who do you get mad at? In your own life, you get mad at the guy who gave you a check that bounced, not at the bank. But, in politics, you get mad at whoever tells you that there is no money. One of the secrets of the growth of the welfare state is that politicians get a lot of mileage out of making promises, without setting aside enough money to fulfill those promises. When Congress votes for all sorts of benefits, without voting for enough taxes to pay for them, they get the support of those who have been promised the benefits, without getting grief from the taxpayers. It's strictly win-win as far as the welfare-state politicians are concerned. But it is strictly lose-lose, big-time, for the country, as deficits skyrocket. Anyone who says that we don't have the money to pay what was promised is accused of trying to destroy Social Security, Medicare or Obamacare -- or whatever other unfunded promises have been made. It is like blaming the bank for saying that the check bounced.

Khalid Sheik Mohammed to be tried by military commission
Well, sports fans, Reality has won yet another game against the Chicago Hope and Change pickup ball club, putting Reality way ahead in the series. ~Bob. Excerpt: Khalid Sheik Mohammed and four alleged co-conspirators accused of organizing the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks will be tried before a military commission at Guantanamo Bay, the Obama administration said Monday, reversing its long-held plan to bring the men to trial in federal court. The decision scuttled one of the administration’s signature goals and signified the enduring role of Guantanamo Bay as part of the country’s counterterrorism arsenal. It may also mark the effective end of the administration’s effort, now more than two years old, to close the detention center in Cuba. In announcing the decision, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said he will return the case to the Defense Department “reluctantly” and blamed the move on Congress, which has erected a series of barriers to bringing detainees to the United States, even for prosecution.

Justice Deserves Better Than Holder
Excerpt: If they weren’t so wrong on issue after issue, I’d almost feel sorry for the Obama administration. But instead, I feel nothing but contempt for the most arrogant, self-centered and self-aggrandizing set of elitists to ever administer our country. The Khalid Sheikh Mohammed saga is yet another administration debacle that can best be explained by words that go roughly like these: “The Obama administration ended a year of indecision with a major reversal…” It’s getting to the point that ending indecision with major reversal of policy is one of the acts that Obama is best at.

A Kangaroo Court
for Khalid Sheik Mohammed
The view from Cloud Coo Coo Land. ~Bob. Excerpt: Al Qaeda’s leaders gambled that a single spectacular terrorist incident would trigger a massive and long-lasting overreaction on the part of the U.S. government, and that the nation would be plunged into a state of culturally sanctioned panic, which would cause us to betray many of our most basic values in the illusory pursuit of a world in which we were “safe” from “the terrorists.” In short, if al Qaeda really does “hate us for our freedoms,” then its ultimate triumph has been its ability to get us to act as if, in many instances, we have come to hate those freedoms as well. The Obama administration’s announcement that Mohammed and four other Guantanamo detainees will be tried before military tribunals rather than in civilian courts is just the latest evidence that al Qaeda’s gamble has paid off, to an extent that must be approaching the group’s most feverish dreams. (It appears this is the view from the Left. They give no more credence to “the War on Terror” than they do to “the war on drugs” or “the war on poverty.” The mere fact that we have uniformed people killing and being killed in our names doesn’t register on their list of priorities. The Left has no support for, or confidence in, the system of military courts and procedures our armed service members live under every day. The Left prefers to see the jihadists as misunderstood children acting up to garner our attention, rather than as murderous scum to be eradicated lest they find a way to kill us all. The jihadists aren’t mere criminals we hope to rehabilitate, they’re armed enemy combatants with an unbroken will to do us harm. And, most telling of all, remember the case of Ahmed Ghailani, tried for the bombings of US embassies in 1998, just decided last November; the judge threw out 284 charges, convicting Ghailani of ONE count of CONSPIRACY TO DAMAGE PROPERTY. No conviction for murder. Not even a conviction for littering. The DOJ wasn’t even allowed to call its best witnesses to testify. THAT’S what to expect in criminal court and it isn’t likely to change in any civilian criminal trial, and it is still subject to appeal. And that is the truth that forced the administration to return to military tribunals. Ron P.)

Iran’s Supreme Leader: ‘We Have Won on the Nuclear Front’
Excerpt: In a recent meeting that took place between Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei and a group of his top-ranking military commanders, the nuclear matter was a focal point (Farsi link here). The supreme leader commented on the fact that the (Western) oppressors have employed all of their political, propaganda, and economic might in forcing the Islamic Republic to abandon its nuclear pursuits. Then, he said: And now, after eight years of pressure, the Islamic Iran has won out. (Nobody quits fighting when they think they’re winning. Ron P.)

U.N., France strike at Ivory Coast leader’s forces
Suppose they gave a war and we stayed home? ~Bob. Excerpt: U.N. peacekeepers and French troops launched military operations against loyalists of Ivory Coast’s longtime strongman Monday, a significant escalation of force that effectively placed peacekeepers on one side of the West African country’s deepening civil war. The United Nations and France authorized helicopter gunships to target key installations and heavy-weapons sites after days of attacks by loyalists of incumbent leader Laurent Gbagbo on peacekeepers and civilians, according to U.N. officials.

School Official Finds Retirement Is Just A Higher Pay Grade
Excerpt: Carlos Bejarano, a local schools superintendent with more than 30 years in education, is nearing retirement, but his plans include neither long afternoons on the golf course nor extended road trips with the family. His retirement, in fact, will closely resemble the workaday life he has been living. Mr. Bejarano is one of an increasing number of public employees here who are retiring one day and going right back to the same jobs the next, enabling them to supplement their income with retirement benefits without really retiring at all. The practice, restricted under Arizona law but common nonetheless because of loopholes, has come under fire recently from critics who say such “double dipping” is endangering the financial health of state pension funds.

Excerpt: Every president since Richard Nixon has asserted that we are sitting ducks for those who brandish the oil weapon. To keep the evildoers at bay, the government must adopt policies that ensure our energy independence. Like his predecessors, President Obama is worshiping at this altar. And why not? How many elections have been lost by blaming foreigners for an impending crisis? Despite their cynicism about politicians, most people actually believe that mineral resources, including oil, are doomed to disappear. It’s obvious: Start with a given stock of provisions in the cupboard, subtract consumption and eventually the cupboard will be bare. But what is obvious is often wrong. We never run out of minerals. At some point it just costs too much to produce them profitably. In the 19th century, the big energy scare was in Europe. Most thought Europe was running out of coal. That doomsday scenario never materialized. Thanks to a plethora of substitutes, the prices that European coal could fetch today are far below its development and extraction costs. Consequently, Europe sits on top of billions of tons of worthless coal. Once economics enters the picture, the notion of fixed reserves becomes meaningless. Reserves are not fixed. Proven oil reserves, for example, represent a warehouse inventory of the expected cumulative profitable output, not a fixed stock of oil thought to be in the ground.

Patriot Post Humor
Some good ones this week. ~Bob.

Former NHS director dies after operation is cancelled four times at her own hospital
This is NOT from The Onion. This is from the healthcare system the left is determined we should have. ~Bob. Excerpt: A former NHS director died after waiting for nine months for an operation - at her own hospital. Margaret Hutchon, a former mayor, had been waiting since last June for a follow-up stomach operation at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, Essex. But her appointments to go under the knife were cancelled four times and she barely regained consciousness after finally having surgery.

GOP group crowdsources Obama administration info
Excerpt: Crossroads GPS, the cash-rich Republican outside group planning to spend $120 million on the 2012 election in conjunction with its sister organization American Crossroads, announced Wednesday the launch of a website called"designed to crowd-source information gleaned from Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and other public documents by organizations, individuals and journalists." The site is meant to "facilitate efficient sharing of public information about the Obama Administration" and highlight FOIA requests that have gone unfulfilled. It has been set up to look like Wikipedia.

Obama might be a socialist
Excerpt: I ought to know. I was Mr. Obama’s college classmate at Columbia University Class of ‘83. Our college was dominated by socialists and Marxists who hated capitalism and America. Let’s look at the facts up close and personal - Jeff Foxworthy style. Mr. Foxworthy leaves no doubt as to “who might be a redneck.” Let me leave no doubt that “Obama might be a socialist.” If you believe it’s greedy for American taxpayers to want to keep more of their own money, but not greedy to demand that government confiscate other people’s money and redistribute it to those who didn’t earn it, you might be a socialist. (A nice take-off on the Foxworthy comedy routine.... except it's really not so funny. --Del)

As of 2012, Religion Will Be Studied In All Russian Schools
Excerpt: After a trial year, "Foundations of religious culture and ethics" will be taught in all Russian schools throughout the country next year, the Russian Ministry of Education announced at a press conference held on March 23 in Moscow with representatives of the four major religions. According to authorities and religious leaders, especially from the Russian Orthodox Church, the trial year was a "success", but nobody was able to respond to journalists questions with exact figures on the course participants and the degree of satisfaction. "A large number of students chose courses on religion - said Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, chairman of the Department for the Church's relations with society at the Patriarchate of Moscow - and this did not cause any inter-religious conflict, but instead we notice a change in the morale among the children who attend them”. Banned during the Soviet era, religion made a comeback in schools in April 2010, but only in some regions, with an initiative strongly supported by the Patriarch of Moscow and blessed by the Kremlin, which aims to a cement national identity on shared values.

Dennis Prager: Why The Almighty Isn't Doing Well These Days
Excerpt: That is why the more university education a person receives, the more he is likely to hold secular and left-wing views. The secular left argues that this correlation is due to the fact that a college graduate knows more and thinks more clearly and therefore gravitates leftward and toward secularism. But if you believe that the average college graduate is a clear and knowledgeable thinker as a result of his or her time at university, I have more than one bridge to sell you. A radio talk show host for 29 years, I long ago began asking callers who made foolish comments what graduate school they attended. It takes higher education to learn to believe that America and Israel are villains, that men and women have essentially the same natures, that human nature is good, that ever-larger governments create wealth, etc.

Church Condemns China; Drug Mules Executed
Excerpt: Chinese authorities executed three Filipino drug mules on Wednesday, triggering condemnation in the Catholic Philippines and despair for family members who shared their final moments. The executions came after repeated pleas by the Philippine government for their sentences to be commuted were turned down, and ended vigils in Manila where supporters of the trio had prayed for a miracle. "Our government had taken every available opportunity to appeal to the authorities of China for clemency in their cases," presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said in a statement. (I’m with China on this one. If I could push a button and kill everyone involved in the illegal drug trade in America, we’d no longer have a drug problem, just an offal disposal problem. ~Bob.)

Jewish Students Under Assault - Part 1
Excerpt: Communications guru Frank Luntz recently described to the JerusalemPost’s David Horowitz a focus group he did with 35 Harvard and MIT students, 20 non-Jewish and 15 Jewish. Within ten minutes, the non-Jewish students had started talking about “Israeli war crimes,” “the Israel Lobby,” and “Jewish power.” And all the while the Jewish students just sat there as if struck dumb. It took a full 49 minutes until the head of the Harvard Israel Action group tried to answer. After three hours, Luntz dismissed the non-Jewish students and berated some of the brightest Jewish students in America for having being unwilling or incapable of responding. The latter sat there painfully embarrassed by the realization that if they could not even speak up to a group of peers, they would never be able to defend Israel any place else. And the situation at Cambridge and Oxford, where he spent three years in graduate school, Luntz confided, is even worse.

TEA party and Republicans do not deserve the freedoms in the constitution-??
Reserved for Liberals, illegal immigrants, drug gangs and Jihadist terrorists. ~Bob. Excerpt: Says Senator Frank Lautenberg March 22, 2011; Democrat career politician from New Jersey; Referring to members of the TEA Party and Republicans, states "They don't deserve the freedoms in the constitution."

France: Anti - Burqa Law Goes Into Effect
how about in the 750 Muslim “no go” areas? ~Bob. Excerpt: On Monday the Anti-Burqa law will go into effect in France and police officers will be required to adhere to strict orders: according to the guide that has been distributed, signed by Interior Minister Claude Gueant - a 9-page document that specifies the details of the procedure to be applied when writing such incidents up - whoever wears any "garment that conceals the face" in public places, such as movie theatres, stations, restaurants, theatres, buses, hospitals, museums, libraries, stadiums and fitness centres, will be fined 150 euros ($212 US).

Swedish Church: Don't Christen Asylum-Seekers
Excerpt: One of the reasons for the recommendation is because it can cause danger and increase risks if a person who has converted to Christianity is later sent back to their home country. Another reason is that the motive for the christening can be questioned by some who suggest that asylum seekers convert to Christianity to increase their chances of staying in Sweden.

Caroline Glick: Richard Goldstone and Palestinian Statehood
Excerpt: Looking ahead, we need to consider how they may escalate their hostile behavior and develop plans to minimize the damage Europeans can cause the [Israeli] economy. Unfortunately, the chattering classes are behaving as though when faced with the specter of further European economic sanctions, we have no option other than to throw ourselves at Europe's feet and beg for mercy. But this is ridiculous. AS THE 18 years since Oslo have shown, begging Europeans for mercy on the basis of concessions to the Palestinians is a losing strategy. Europe is not interested in displaying mercy toward the Jewish state, and it does not view any concessions as sufficient. But Europe does respond to power politics. With India now producing cars and Israel developing its own natural gas and shale oil fields, it is the job of the government and business leaders to make the Europeans think long and hard about how willing they will be to alienate our consumers and businesses.

An Open Letter To Our University Community About Troubling Hypocrisy On Our Campus
Excerpt: So, if hundreds of millions of Arabs and Muslims have suffered severe, long-standing repression throughout the Mideast, as is now highly evident, why then have those students who relentlessly pounce on every action and policy of Israel—which comprises 0.04% of the Mideast—been deafeningly silent all these years regarding the egregious injustices occurring in the other 99.96% of the Mideast? Why haven’t the websites and Facebook pages of the MSA, ASU and SJP been abuzz with plans for social activism and moral outrage over the murder of civilians who are fighting to gain liberty in Arab countries as they always are when Israel exercises self-defense by striking at Palestinian terrorist groups who launch rockets at its civilians from Gaza or when it erects barriers to block suicide bombers? Are those students simply less moved by injustices carried out by Arabs and Muslims against their own people? Or is it possible that human rights and social justice have been hijacked by these groups for use as expedient intellectual weapons in the service of a culturally driven agenda—to bludgeon the Jewish state? In this regard we do well to heed the assertion of Palestinian journalist Khaled Abu Toameh, “What is happening on the U.S. campuses is not about supporting the Palestinians as much as it is about promoting hatred for the Jewish state” and “ending the existence of Israel.” (The practice of holding "Israel Apartheid" (which really means "Hate Israel") weeks on college campuses started in California, spread there, and has now appeared in other states as well. This has been going on for quite a few years now, and the rhetoric used has grown steadily more vicious. Finally a group of professors at UC San Diego, noting the lack of interest among the anti-Israel groups for what's going on in the Middle East lately, decided to confront this abuse of free speech. Their open letter shown below is well done. If there were groups of activist students running "Hate Iran" or "Hate Gaza" weeks on a campus, there would be enormous controversy about it, and more than likely violent protests. But somehow it's OK for student groups to run weeklong exercises in totally biased inputs and misinformation about Israel, to the enormous offense of all Jewish students and anyone else who believes Israel has a right to exist. Of course Israel is not perfect (who is?), but compared to the various nations surrounding them, all Israelis enjoy far more basic rights and freedoms than their neighbors. And it certainly is true that far, far more Arabs and Muslims have suffered and died at the hands of Arab and Muslim governments than have ever died at the hands of Israelis. But that doesn't appear to matter to the anti-Israel activists. --Del)

Worth Reading: Mark Steyn: Earthquake Demographics: Happy Warrior
Excerpt: ‘Why is there no looting in Japan?” wondered a headline in the Daily Telegraph. So did a lot of other folks. Various answers were posited: The Japanese are a highly civilized people — which would have been news to the 22 British watchkeepers on the island of Tarawa who were tied to trees, beheaded, set alight, and tossed in a pit less than 70 years ago. Alternatively, Japan enjoys the benefits of being an ethnically homogeneous society — which didn’t prevent the ethnically homogeneous West Country of Britain from being wracked by widespread thievery during the floods of 2007. Most analysts overlooked the most obvious factor: Looting is a young man’s game, and the Japanese are too old. They’re the oldest society on earth. They have a world-record life expectancy — nearly 87 for women. A quarter of the population is over 65 — and an ever growing chunk is way over. In 1963, Japan had 153 centenarians; by 2010, it had 40,399; by 2020, the figure is projected to be just under 130,000. This isn’t a demographic one would expect to see hurling their walkers through the Radio Shack window and staggering out under a brand new karaoke machine only to keel over from a massive stroke before they’ve made it through the first eight bars of “I Will Survive.”

Worth reading: Mark Steyn: Re: Lindsay Graham and the First Amendment
Excerpt: When I’m speaking on this subject, I often get asked to reprise the words I quote in my book, from Gen. Sir Charles Napier in India explaining to the locals his position on suttee — the tradition of burning widows on the funeral pyres of their husbands. General Napier was impeccably multicultural: “You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: when men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours.” In the absence of cultural confidence overseas, we are expending blood and treasure building an Afghanistan fit only for pederasts, tribal heroin cartels, and the blood-soaked savages of Mazar e-Sharif. In the absence of cultural confidence at home, we are sending the message that the bedrock principles of free, pluralist societies will bend and crumble in a vain race to keep up with the ever touchier sensitivities of the perpetually aggrieved. Claire Berlinski has it right: The real “racists” here are not this no-name pastor and his minimal flock but Reid, Graham, and the Times — for they assume that a significant proportion of Muslims are not responsible human beings but animals no more capable of rational behavior than the tiger who mauled Siegfried’s Roy. If that is true, certain consequences follow there from. The abandonment of the First Amendment is not one of them. In Trafalgar Square, there is a statue of General Napier. I would urge any visitors to London to see it before it’s taken down, as it surely will be one day soon. Imagine what our world would look like if it were Lindsey Graham up on that plinth. A society led by such “men” cannot survive, and does not deserve to.

Two men shot and killed at border crossing
Excerpt: In a rare shooting at the San Ysidro border crossing, two San Diego workers were killed early Monday as they sat in a pickup waiting to enter the U.S. The men were on their way to work when someone shot them repeatedly with a 9 mm weapon. The Baja California Attorney General’s Office identified the victims as Kevin Joel Romero, 28, and Sergio Salcido Luna, 25. The agency provided few details of the incident, which occurred at about 2:40 a.m., a time when many workers are in line to cross. The men’s employer said they lived in Tijuana and worked for West Coast Beverage Maintenance, a company on Morena Boulevard that services and cleans draft beer equipment for bars and restaurants.

The Cook Report: An Intruding World
Excerpt: In the United States, we are used to deficit scolds holding forth on the op-ed pages and on the cable food-fight shows. But in Europe, the genuine prospect of having to bail out nearby countries or, conversely, needing your neighbors to bail out your nation’s economy has a way of focusing the mind. David Cameron, who has been the United Kingdom’s prime minister for less than a year, has embarked on an austerity program that Americans can’t even imagine. The impact, which Britons are just starting to feel, is prompting massive demonstrations and, in some cases, rioting in the streets. Needless to say, no one is rioting in Washington. Democrats and Republicans in Congress and in the White House have long avoided making the tough decisions on the nation’s deficit. One hears a lot of talk about proposals to address budget deficits, entitlements, the spiraling national debt, and our unsustainable financial path. But policymakers have taken no actions that have sent people to the barricades, save in Madison, Wis.

Ocean Life Can Handle Radioactive Leaks, Experts Say
Excerpt: "It's a very large ocean," noted William Burnett of Florida State University. Very close to the nuclear plant -- less than half a mile or so -- sea creatures might be in danger of problems like genetic mutations if the dumping goes on a long time, he said. But there shouldn't be any serious hazard farther away "unless this escalates into something much, much larger than it has so far," he said. Ken Buesseler of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Mass., said readings for radioactive iodine and cesium show a thousand-fold drop from the shore to monitors about 19 miles offshore. He said radioactive doses in seafood may turn out to be detectable but probably won't be a significant health hazard. They'd probably be less of a concern than what people could get from land-based sources like drinking water or eating produce, he said.

Immaculate Intervention: The Wars of Humanitarianism
Excerpt: There are wars in pursuit of interest. In these wars, nations pursue economic or strategic ends to protect the nation or expand its power. There are also wars of ideology, designed to spread some idea of “the good,” whether this good is religious or secular. The two obviously can be intertwined, such that a war designed to spread an ideology also strengthens the interests of the nation spreading the ideology. Since World War II, a new class of war has emerged that we might call humanitarian wars — wars in which the combatants claim to be fighting neither for their national interest nor to impose any ideology, but rather to prevent inordinate human suffering. In Kosovo and now in Libya, this has been defined as stopping a government from committing mass murder. But it is not confined to that: In the 1990s, the U.S. intervention in Somalia was intended to alleviate a famine while the invasion of Haiti was designed to remove a corrupt and oppressive regime causing grievous suffering.

Qaddafi's Revenge
Excerpt: When the civil war started in Libya, Col. Qadhafi warned the EU not to interfere, or he would open the floodgates and swamp the northern Med with the flotsam and jetsam of black Africa. Once the NATO war began, he vowed to carry out his plan of revenge. Italy was to be a particular target, since it had long enjoyed a special relationship with Libya — the state oil company ENI had the Libyan oil concession, and Ghadaffi was Prime Minister Berlusconi’s good “friend”. The proximity of Italian territory guaranteed that the Italians would bear the brunt of any onslaught of refugees from Libya. And now it seems to have begun. The island of Lampedusa is already overwhelmed, and although the Italian government is attempting to ship the overflow of migrants to camps on the mainland, bad weather and simple logistics mean that the refugees pour in faster than they can be moved out. In the following article, notice that most of the new arrivals from Libya are from Eritrea and Somalia, which means that they will be even more dysfunctional, violent, and criminal than the Tunisians and Libyans. (Like Los Angeles. Crazy people. Everywhere. - Kate)

Diversity Perversity
Excerpt: The terms affirmative action, equal representation, preferential treatment and quotas just don't sell well. The intellectual elite and their media, government and corporate enthusiasts have come up with diversity, a seemingly benign term that's a cover for racially discriminatory policy. (...) Diversity is an elitist term used to give respectability to acts and policy that would otherwise be deemed as racism. (Williams must’ve been reading TOJ. –Ron. P.)

Losing Yemen
Excerpt: While fighting in Libya has been dominating the news, Yemen, a Middle Eastern country extremely critical to American strategic interests, is emerging as the next domino in the wave of protests engulfing the region. Unfortunately, the prospect of Yemen’s collapse carries devastating implications for world security, as the country stands a great likelihood of becoming a lawless incubator of terrorism. The poorest and most unstable of all Middle Eastern countries, Yemen occupies a strategic position in the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula, straddling one side of the 20-mile wide Mandab Strait, through which all shipping from the Indian Ocean must go to reach the Suez Canal. While Yemen borders a vital shipping lane, equally important for world commerce are the oil fields located in adjacent Saudi Arabia. Most importantly, Yemen is also a well-known haven for al Qaeda.

Libyan Rebels Sinking
Excerpt: The see-saw battle in Libya rages on, with the rebels asking for a truce and in a full-scale retreat from cities they recently re-captured. The weaknesses of the rebel forces mean that they will need significant, long-term outside assistance to survive unless the coalition decides to remove Qaddafi from power. The West now faces a catch-22: It can provide the rebels with what they need, knowing there are Islamist elements among them or the rebels will go to those willing to help them, which could include Al-Qaeda, Hezbollah and other Islamists.

How the War in Libya Will Jeopardize Our Homeland Security
Excerpt: Many media outlets have covered the crisis in Libya, but few have identified how the crisis can profoundly jeopardize our homeland security. But make no mistake about it: our engagement in Libya opens our nation up to various threats and risks of destabilization. Are we prepared? Looking back at the 1970’s, we witness that anytime civil unrest occurs abroad, the U.S. State Department implements a very unique program: mass asylum initiatives. Designed to help relieve the burden of conflict and provide some needed respite for those deserving of humanitarian and political sanctuary, the mass asylum initiatives were established with the best of intentions. However, the assumption of responsibility on our part to provide support has also led to naivete and oversight of what is now a severely crippled program.

“Uncontrollable” Muslim Violence: The Latest Excuse
Excerpt: The burning of the Koran by a couple of small time pastors, while certainly a crude and reprehensible act, was not the ultimate cause of the killing by Islamists of UN staff in Afghanistan or Christians praying in a church in Pakistan. Responsible Muslims, such as presumably Ambassador Haroon himself, have failed to lead efforts to reform their own religion and to marginalize the clerics and other Islamists who use the Koran and other Islamic teachings to incite hatred and violence against ‘non-believers.’

Bashir Witness Claims CIMB Niaga Heist Was to Fund Jihad
Excerpt: A deadly heist at a CIMB Niaga bank branch in Medan last year was carried out to fund jihad, a suspected militant told the court on Monday at the trial of controversial cleric Abu Bakar Bashir. “The money was intended for Jihad Fisabilillah,” or struggling in the name of Allah, said Beben Khairul Banin, who is being tried separately for the Aug. 18 robbery that left one police officer dead. “We will fight against anything considered an affront to Islam,” he told the South Jakarta District Court. Banks are among the targets “because they seek interest, which is against Islamic law,” he said. (We will impose our Islamic values on you! ~Bob.)

Afghan policeman murders two American soldiers
Excerpt: As I have said many times in the context of many similar incidents in Iraq and Afghanistan, there is no reliable way to distinguish a peaceful Muslim from a jihadist. This is yet more fruit of the unwillingness to make even a cursory attempt to take that fact into account.

News brief
Excerpt: While these numbers seem alarming, TEPCO has predicted that a person eating seaweed and fish from the waters immediately outside the plant every day for a year would receive a dose of just 0.6 mSv. [0.6mSv = 600 microSeiverts—RGP] (…) The IAEA has reported the most recent results of tests on vegetables grown in Fukushima and neighboring prefectures. In 133 of 134 samples tested, radiation was either not detected or was detected at levels lower than regulatory limits. A single sample of mushrooms from Fukushima province exceeded regulatory limits on radioactive iodine and cesium.

Islamists on Welfare: Paid to Plot the West’s Demise
Excerpt: In 2008, the Toronto Sun reported that “hundreds of [Greater Toronto Area] Muslim men in polygamous marriages — some with a harem of wives — are receiving welfare and social benefits for each of their spouses, thanks to the city and province, Muslim leaders say.” “Polygamy is a regular part of life for many Muslims,” Canadian Society of Muslims president Mumtaz Ali declared bluntly. “Ontario recognizes religious marriages for Muslims and others.” Government officials quickly denied the Muslim leader’s claims about immigration law and social benefits regulations. Only one public servant seemed sufficiently concerned. “This is wrong,” said city councilor Rob Ford. “They should put a stop to this immediately.” Instead, welfare abuse by Muslims appears to have metastasized across the Western world. Almost three years later, news stories about radical Muslims — often immigrants — engaged in social benefits scams emerge regularly from Europe, Canada, and Australia. Even when they are not involved in fraud, Muslims frequently are overrepresented on welfare rolls, compared with other communities. The statistics from around the globe are jaw-dropping, especially in economically uncertain times.

America may be involved in Libya for many years, experts say
Excerpt: The United States is in Libya for the long haul, whether the Obama administration likes it or not, and weeding out al Qaeda infiltrators from the opposition bent on taking over control of the country from strongman Moammar Gadhafi will be an enormous challenge, experts said. Bruce Riedel, a former CIA officer and senior adviser to three U.S. presidents on Middle East and South Asian issues, told The Examiner that "mission creep" is almost a certainty in Libya. He said the United States and NATO should twist the arms of opposition leaders to force al Qaeda out of their coalition, if they want to be supplied with weapons and aid from allies. "We have to recognize, whether we like it or not, we own this problem now," said Riedel, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. "The notion that you can intervene and walk away from it is very disingenuous," said Riedel. "Half measures are likely to produce failed outcomes. As much as the administration wants to reassure this is no major operation, it is. Once you're in it's very difficult to get out."

Nice does this mean I can opt out of Social Security?
Excerpt: Last year, Michigan's then-Democratic governor signed a bipartisan measure requiring Michigan teachers and school administrators to contribute 3 percent of their pay toward their retirement health care benefit. A judge has now found this contribution requirement unconstitutional because the benefit can be changed or abolished at any time by the legislature:
Even Kerry can be right once in awhile. ~Bob. Excerpt: Senators John Kerry and Max Baucus have an interesting opinion article in the Wall Street Journal today urging ratification of the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. It’s interesting not so much for what it says as for whom it’s addressed to. Kerry and Baucus make in straightforward terms the case for the Colombia FTA—it would open new markets to U.S. exporters, Colombia has upgraded its labor laws and cracked down on attacks on union officers. Familiar stuff, and irrefutable. So who is it addressed to? To Barack Obama, of course.

The Stifling Effect of Muhammed’s Life and Teachings on Muslim Society
Excerpt: We need a constructive and fact-based debate about Muhammed’s life and his meaning for society today. “You must understand that Islam is a fundamentally violent religion, as opposed to Christianity.” These words were spoken to me in Islamabad in 1994 by an apostate professor whose name I cannot reveal here, because apostasy, under traditional Islam, means death. He added: “You can test my claim by studying the prophets Muhammed and Jesus.” Back then, my knowledge about Islam was limited. The professor’s two sentences, moreover, formed a sharp contrast with the things another Pakistani in Islamabad had said to me about Islam. (OK, this guy is not going for the PC award of the month. Straight talk and facts about Mohammed and the religion he set up. Yes, there are Muslims who don't take it all literally, who make fine neighbors and friends. Unfortunately, they have a lot less influence on events these days than the Islamists and jihadists. --Del)

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