Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Political Digest for September 7, 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 all the things readers send me for the blog. But if you send something without a link, you get a “Maggie’s drawers,” signaling a complete miss, as I don’t have the time to read 300 e-mails a day and do web searches for pieces without links. Sorry. ~Bob.

Old Jarhead Blog Removed?
For the third Saturday in a row, when readers logged on to my blog at, they got a "blog removed" message with no explanation. Each time I logged on to Blogspot and posted a query and the blog returned in a few hours. They say they have a system for auto removing Spam blogs, but mine has zero advertising, except my books, I kill Spam posts, and it has been up since 2008. I don't know if it is a blogspot glitch, like the way they sometimes change scheduled posts to drafts, or an attack. It is costing me readers--weekly page views dropped in that time from over 4k to about 3k. If you get that message, please try again later. I have filed an appeal—didn’t realize it was necessary, as it had come back. We shall see.

Democrat Cats
My step-daughter passed me an over-due bill for our cat and her daughter’s cat, which she was keeping, but discovered she couldn’t collect welfare for, so they are living with us in Chicago. I wrote to the City of Madison and explained, “These cats, like Democrat Senators, have all fled to Illinois & no longer reside in Madison.” ~Bob.

Shooting at IHOP Restaurant in Nevada Kills Two National Guard Members, At Least One Other
This is what happens when people like Jimmy Hoffa create a climate of violence. Okay, that’s nuts—but no worse than the media trying to blame the Gifford’s shooting on Palin. ~Bob. Excerpt: A man with a rifle opened fire at an IHOP restaurant in Nevada's capital on Tuesday, wounding six people and killing two uniformed National Guard members in a hail of gunfire before shooting himself, authorities and witnesses said. A National Guard spokesman told Fox News that three other service members were wounded in the shooting. A third person was killed in addition to the two service members. The gunman died from self-inflicted gunshot wounds several hours later, authorities said. It wasn't immediately clear whether the gunman had any connection with the military or the Guard and authorities weren't saying whether the attack targeted the Guard members, who were meeting at the restaurant.

Qaeda offshoot acquires Libyan air missiles: EU
It will be a great irony if, when a planeload of innocent folks are murdered, there were at least one member of the media who cheered the “brave Libyan Freedom Fighters” on board. ~Bob. Excerpt: Al-Qaeda's north African branch has acquired a stockpile of weapons in Libya, including surface-to-air missiles that are threatening air travel, the EU's counter-terrorism coordinator said Monday. Due to the turmoil in Libya, members of Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb have "gained access to weapons, either small arms or machine-guns, or certain surface-to-air missiles which are extremely dangerous because they pose a risk to flights over the territory," said Gilles de Kerchove.

Hoffa Threatens GOP At Obama Event: "Take These Son Of Bitches Out"
Excerpt: "President Obama, this is your army. We are ready to march. Let's take these son of bitches out and give America back to an America where we belong," Hoffa added. (When Obama said we need more civility in public discourse, he meant from Republicans. Violent speech from Democrats? Not so much. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: Jimmy Hoffa, in his introduction to Barack Obama, managed to violate almost every liberal commandment on “civility”: They’ve got a war, they got a war with us and there’s only going to be one winner. It’s going to be the workers of Michigan, and America. We’re going to win that war . . . President Obama, this is your army. We are ready to march. Let’s take these son of bitches out and give America back to an America where we belong. 1) The use of martial imagery: After the Giffords shooting, we were lectured that metaphors like “crosshairs” were inflammatory; but war seems pretty overt. 2) Coded threats: We were lectured that talk radio often uses language tantamount to calling for near insurrection; but by that logic “war,” “army,” and “march” are, again, not an implied but in some sense an overt call to action of some sort (e.g., what does Hoffa mean by his army marching to war?). 3) Profanity: Even talk radio cannot get away with “these son of bitches”; we are back to Reverend Wright’s “God damn America” both in language and in the apparent compliant silence of the hearer Barack Obama.

Tweet: @jamestaranto James Taranto
Shorter Obama: Re-elect me, and the whole country can be as successful and prosperous as Detroit.

Excerpt: There’s something eerily familiar about Obama’s latest round of pledges, promises, and plans for infrastructure spending.

Voter Discontent Deepens Ahead of Obama Jobs Plan
Excerpt: President Barack Obama this week will try to launch a political comeback amid the lowest approval ratings of his presidency and a growing sense of economic foreboding here and across the country among voters who are increasingly questioning their president's skills and priorities. A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll of 1,000 adults, taken Aug. 27-31, found that 44% of Americans approve of the job Mr. Obama is doing as president, with more than half, or 51%, disapproving for the first time since his inauguration. Some 73% say the country is headed in the wrong direction, a level of pessimism not seen since late 2008, as the financial crisis struck. More than 70% of people surveyed said the economy hasn't yet hit bottom. Most Americans still say the president inherited the nation's economic maladies from President George W. Bush rather than caused them, although that number is slipping.

Obama ratings sink to new lows as hope fades
Excerpt: Public pessimism about the direction of the country has jumped to its highest level in nearly three years, erasing the sense of hope that followed President Obama’s inauguration and pushing his approval ratings to a record low, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. More than 60 percent of those surveyed say they disapprove of the way the president is handling the economy and, what has become issue No. 1, the stagnant jobs situation. Just 43 percent now approve of the job he is doing overall, a new career low; 53 percent disapprove, a new high.

Obama Falls to New Lows in End-of-Summer Polling
Excerpt: ABC News/Washington Post and NBC News/Wall Street Journal polls released early Tuesday show President Obama with the lowest job ratings of his tenure, leading Democratic pollster Peter Hart, who conducted the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll with Republican pollster Bill McInturff, to proclaim that "Obama is no longer the favorite to win re-election." (…) Perhaps more ominously, Americans may also be souring on Obama personally. In the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, equal percentages of Americans -- 44 percent -- had positive and negative feelings toward Obama. The percentage of Americans who views Obama negatively is at an all-time high, while the percentage holding positive feelings is at its lowest point since late 2007, during the campaign. The erosion of his personal and job ratings has taken a toll on Obama's re-election prospects, according to the NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll. A plurality of registered voters now say that they will probably vote for the Republican candidate for president in 2012; a generic Republican leads Obama, 44 percent to 40 percent. (I would never have believed I’d miss the merely incompetent Jimmy Carter. Caution is needed. It’s 14 months until the 2012 election. Lots can—and will—happen. Lots of money—most of Democrat’s, as always—will be spent. Some people will change their minds again. Candidates will be demonized, Palinized, Borked in the MSM. There’s a lot of work ahead of us... Ron P.)

President Obama’s ‘are you better off’ problem
Excerpt: Every re-election race — from city council to president — ultimately comes down to a simple question: Are you better off than you were (fill-in-the-blank) years ago?
To win, the incumbent has to convince a majority of voters that the answer to that question is “yes” (or that it will be “yes” in the not-too-distant future). As of today, according to new polling conducted by the Washington Post/ABC News, nearly nine in 10 adults say they are either “about the same”(50 percent) or worse off (35 percent) financially than they were four years ago. Just 15 percent describe themselves as “better off”. And that is a major problem for President Obama heading into his re-election race next fall.

Pelosi drops the word 'stimulus'
Excerpt: Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and House Democrats have dropped the word "stimulus" from their vocabulary. Though the House minority leader and her caucus are still pushing an economic stimulus agenda to save the economy, they’ve radically changed their rhetoric with the hope of winning over voters who saw "stimulus" as close to a dirty word. Democrats are now being careful to frame their job-creation agenda in language excluding references to any stimulus, even though their favored policies for ending the deepest recession since the Great Depression are largely the same.

Big Government Rising?
Excerpt: How does a trillion dollars in more federal government spending sound to you? For most Americans, the idea of growing government at a time when deficits are sky high might seem preposterous. But for many on the left, it's the only way they can think of to get the economy moving again, and they think some sort of new New Deal should be included in President Obama’s much-touted jobs speech on Thursday. Their end goal? The continued rise of big government. Case in point: Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA). On Sunday's Meet the Press, she unveiled her prescription for pulling the U.S. economy out of its slump, and it carries an incredibly high price tag. "I'm talking about a jobs program of a trillion dollars or more," she said. "We've got to put Americans to work. That’s the only way to revitalize this economy."

Ahead of Thursday's jobs speech, Obama blasts House Republicans
Excerpt: With his highly-anticipated jobs speech scheduled for Thursday, President Obama used Labor Day to fire up his base and put Republicans on notice. Obama, speaking to an estimated crowd of 13,000 on the Detroit River here, offered a slight preview of his jobs speech, castigating Republicans for not signing on to infrastructure As he has been wont to do since the end of July, Obama put Congress in his crosshairs, saying that on Thursday, the country will see if Republicans are more interested in putting Americans back to work or politics. "We're going to see if we've got some straight-shooters in Congress," Obama said. "We're going to see if congressional Republicans will put country before party." (Obama suffers from the usual leftist-statist hubris. His way is the only right way, so anyone who disagrees with his approach is evil or stupid—or both. The Democrats could, of course, be ‘straight shooters” and “stop playing games” by passing the Ryan budget. If the House Republicans are the problem, why didn’t Obama take advantage of the two years when his party controlled everything to fix things? They couldn’t even propose a budget! ~Bob.)

I'm Tired of Blubbering, Selfish Idiots like Robert A. Hall
Gee, not everyone likes “I’m Tired.” And him a Marine—sort of:

TIM KING : Confessions of a Marine Corps Mutineer
Excerpt: I became a bit of an expert on the military legal system during my time as a U.S. Marine. I don’t know if it was half me and half the Marine Corps, or just how it all came to be the mess that it was; but I do feel that I became a qualified expert of sorts at being a Marine troublemaker. In Marine Corps jargon I was a a ‘Shitbird’ and believe me, it was more like a club than just a word used to belittle us.

Aquamarine on the crest of a wave with £3.4m bank deal
Excerpt: EDINBURGH firm Aquamarine Power has become the first UK marine energy company to secure bank debt after it agreed a £3.4 million loan with Barclays Corporate. It is hoped the ground-breaking deal will act as a blueprint for further such investments in a sector that has traditionally struggled to attract bank finance as most projects remain in the testing stage and are yet to be proved commercially viable. However, Barclays said it had "confidence" in Aquamarine's business model. The first of the company's "Oyster" wave devices was successfully installed at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney last month and is expected to be connected to the grid and be generating electricity by the end of the year. The firm plans to install two further Oyster devices in 2012 and 2013, which will give it an array capable of generating 2.4 megawatts (MW) of power. The income from this will be used to re-pay the five-year loan.

Excerpt: President Obama is planning to deliver a big speech on jobs and the economy. His wish list for Congress will likely include more government infrastructure spending. (Infrastructure spending is also on Rachel Maddow’s wish list). So that citizens know what the president is talking about, they should review the success of the government’s past infrastructure projects. Here’s one to consider: It’s the Yuma Desalting Plant in Arizona, built by the federal Bureau of Reclamation at a taxpayer cost of $245 million. After completing the plant in 1993, Uncle Sam said: “Whoops, we don’t need it after all.” The plant has sat idle for almost two decades, and taxpayers are getting hit for $6 million a year to maintain it. It gets worse. The purpose of the Yuma plant is to reverse some of the environmental damage done by government-subsidized irrigation farming. As irrigation waters reflow back into Western rivers, they boost saline levels and can make the water useless for downstream users. The Yuma plant was supposed to desalinate some of the irrigation flow into the Colorado River, but the government spent more money to build a separate 73-mile canal to drain water straight to the ocean. I imagine that irrigation farming makes economic sense in many places. The problem is that the federal government has vastly subsidized dams and irrigation infrastructure in the West without regard to economics or sound environmental practices.

In Major Shift, Legislation Would Mandate Military Custody of All Terror Suspects
Excerpt: A little-noticed provision of the National Defense Authorization Act would put all terror suspects into immediate military custody, a controversial change that would have significant legal repercussions for the ongoing war on terror. (…) If the measure goes into effect, militants arrested while planning or carrying out a terror attack—or in the aftermath of such a strike—would be placed under military custody rather than being left to civilian law enforcement agencies like the FBI. The measure wouldn’t apply to American citizens, but legal experts believe that it is written broadly enough to encompass large numbers of terror suspects. (The Left will fight this, tooth and nail. One of the great divides between liberals and conservatives is whether to treat radical Islamic jihadists as criminals or as enemy combatants. Currently, the administration is “choosing” on a case by case basis which way to treat individuals (until forced by political pressure to reverse itself). I understand the jihadists see themselves as combatants, not as criminals—even though they perform criminal acts—and, just this once, I agree with them. The criminal justice system has no means to deal with the context or complexities of war. That’s why we wanted KSM tried by a military tribunal, not in a civilian court. Ron P.)

Ten Years Without an Attack: The decision to treat the 9/11 attacks as acts of war rather than crimes was crucial
Excerpt: Ten years ago this week, I switched on the TV in my Justice Department office and saw United Flight 175 destroy one of the World Trade Center towers. Shortly thereafter, American Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. One of the passengers on board was my friend Barbara Olson, a noted author and political commentator, who called from the plane to warn us. Only the brave Americans on United Flight 93 over Pennsylvania prevented a fourth plane from reaching D.C. As I left a deserted Washington that night, I witnessed the unbelievable—our capital's dark sky lit up by a burning Pentagon. But in the decade to follow, the most incredible thing to happen was this: nothing. After 9/11, terrorism experts inside and outside the government all agreed that more attacks would come. The coordinated hijackings revealed our open society's vulnerability and displayed the resources, sophistication and determination of a deadly enemy. Al Qaeda had a committed, intelligent leadership, a safe harbor in Afghanistan with dozens of training camps and thousands of trained fighters, and an ideology that appealed to frustrated, oppressed men in the Arab world. It had a track record of returning to the same targets; it had tried to blow up the World Trade Centers with a truck bomb in 1993. No one would have predicted that George W. Bush, and his successor, Barack Obama, would succeed in preventing another successful and disastrous terrorist attack. ((Mr Yoo was the White House Attorney who approved "Water Boarding". The Libs wanted to prosecute him for that, and tried to after Obama was elected –Dave H.)

Pro-Sharia Lunacy at the New York Times
Excerpt: The article compares the fight against Sharia law to anti-Semitism and depicts it as being based in anti-Muslim bigotry. On the contrary, the campaigns to ban Sharia-based judicial rulings actually protect Muslims who love the U.S. and the values that define it. “The crusade against Sharia undermines American democracy, ignores our country’s successful history of religious tolerance and assimilation, and creates a dangerous divide between America and its fastest-growing religious minority,” Stern writes. At least a dozen states are considering outlawing Islamic arbitration tribunals where Muslims can voluntarily settle their disputes according to Sharia law. As Daveed Garteinstein-Ross notes, there are similar courts for Jews and they are not used as criminal courts. However, there is a danger that an Islamist judge will be able to push his interpretation of the faith from the bench, and that Muslims will feel forced by their communities to use Sharia courts. Islamist groups have also promoted Sharia courts as part of an incremental strategy to bring about Sharia-based governance. The Center for Security Policy has found 50 examples in 23 states “where Muslim-Americans had their cases decided by Sharia Law against their will.” In one case, a Trial Court judge ruled based on Moroccan Sharia law, even though those involved were not Moroccans or even Muslims. (I told my bride we should embrace multiculturism and Shari’a Law. She said I couldn’t afford three more wives. Go figure. I said I was thinking of wives somewhat older than the 9-years allowed by Shari’a, maybe 18 or so, but she wouldn’t budge. Shari’a allows me to beat her for being uncooperative, but unfortunately I taught her to shoot and she can now put rounds in a 6-inch bull’s eye at 100 yards, so that’s out. Who knew she was Islamophobic? ~Bob.)

What if Congressional Black Caucus Were Accused of Wanting Jews Gassed?
Excerpt: Imagine a Jewish Congress member accusing the members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) of wanting to see Jews gassed. How would any decent American — on the right or left — describe such a statement? Loathsome? Morally reprehensible? An obvious lie? All three descriptions would be entirely accurate. Next question: How much media exposure would that slander be given? Would it make the front page of The New York Times and The Washington Post? Would we read ferocious editorials from coast to coast? Would the story lead on TV newscasts? Correct on all three, again. Final question: Would said congressman be allowed to stay in office? We all know the answer to that one, too. So here's a real question: If a black congressman charged that members of Congress who support the tea party "would love to see you and me (blacks) hanging from a tree," what's the difference between that libel and the made-up libel about the CBC wanting to see Jews gassed? The answer, of course, is that there is no difference.

IDF general: Likelihood of regional war growing
the IDF better be sharper than they were in the last go-round in Lebanon, or there will be a lot of dead Jews, to the glee of members of the Religion of Peace and the left. ~Bob. Excerpt: Recent revolutions in the Arab world and the deteriorating ties with Turkey are raising the likelihood of a regional war in the Middle East, IDF Home Front Command Chief, Major General Eyal Eisenberg warned Monday. "It looks like the Arab Spring, but it can also be a radical Islamic winter," he said in a speech at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv.

Two Different Worlds by Thomas Sowell
Excerpt: Judging businesses or their owners by how much wealth they give away -- rather than by how much wealth they create -- is putting the cart before the horse. Wealth is ultimately the only thing that can reduce poverty. The most dramatic reductions in poverty, in countries around the world, have come from increasing the amount of wealth, rather than from a redistribution of existing wealth. What kind of world do we want -- one in which everyone works to increase wealth to whatever extent they can, or a world in which everyone will be supported by either government handouts or private philanthropy, whether they work or don't work? It is not an abstract question. We can already see the consequences on both sides of the Atlantic. Those who have grown used to having others provide their food, shelter and other basics as "rights" are by no means grateful.

United States Senior Association
Another alternative to AARP.

After America: Mark Steyn Lecture

Welcome, Union Brothers and Sisters by Sarah Palin
Excerpt: In my speech on Saturday in Iowa, I said: “Between bailouts for Wall Street cronies and stimulus projects for union bosses’ security and ‘green energy’ giveaways, [Barack Obama] took care of his friends. And now they’re on course to raise a billion dollars for his re-election bid so that they can do it all over again.” This was shamefully on display yesterday at President Obama’s taxpayer-funded campaign rally in Detroit. In introducing the President, Teamsters President James Hoffa represented precisely what I was talking about as he declared war on concerned independent Americans and on the freshman members we sent to Congress last November by saying, “Let’s take these son-of-a-bitches out!” What I say now, I say as a proud former union member and the wife, daughter, and sister of union members. So, as a former card-carrying IBEW sister married to a proud former Laborers, IBEW, and later USW member, please hear me out. What I have to say is for the hard working, patriotic, selfless union brothers and sisters in Michigan and throughout our country: Please don’t be taken in by union bosses’ thuggery like Jim Hoffa represented yesterday. Union bosses like this do not have your best interests at heart. What they care about is their own power and re-electing their friend Barack Obama so he will take care of them to the detriment of everyone else.

Excerpt: In a private 54 page report Goldman Sachs is telling its top clients to bet on a massive financial collapse. The report, which was written by Goldman Strategist Alan Brazil and not meant for the eyes of the public, fell into the hands of the Wall Street Journal at the end of last week. From the report that the select got on August 16th it is obvious that GS thinks that a huge economic crash is coming, but they do have some nice juicy ideas on how a profit can be turned from it. This sort of thing has been written about in the past by bloggers, which has always been dismissed as pure conspiratorial fantasy. But this report was written by a top GS analyst. On top of that the European debt crisis is just going to get worse, says the report, and there is also a whole raft of European financial institutions that are about to go pop.

McConnell attacks Obama over foundering economy
Excerpt: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blamed President Obama in a floor speech Tuesday for the troubled economy and expressed skepticism over the contents of the “jobs” speech the president plans to deliver before Congress later this week. “Most people don't need to read the morning papers or wait for the monthly jobs report to know that they're struggling,” said McConnell from the Senate floor. “No amount of speeches, however carefully crafted to appeal to the anxiety of the moment, will convince them that some politician here in Washington, from the president on down, has the solution,” he continued. McConnell then went on to suggest the White House’s surprise decision over the weekend to abandon plans to tighten Bush-era ozone standards would do more to stimulate the economy than anything Obama could say.

Free Speech Going away: Gagging Us Softly
Excerpt: To be honest, I didn’t really think much about “freedom of speech” until I found myself the subject of three “hate speech” complaints in Canada in 2007. I mean I was philosophically in favor of it, and I’d been consistently opposed to the Dominion’s ghastly “human rights” commissions and their equivalents elsewhere my entire adult life, and from time to time when an especially choice example of politically correct enforcement came up I’d whack it around for a column or two. But I don’t think I really understood how advanced the Left’s assault on this core Western liberty actually was. In 2008, shortly before my writing was put on trial for “flagrant Islamophobia” in British Columbia, several National Review readers e-mailed from the U.S. to query what the big deal was. C’mon, lighten up, what could some “human rights” pseudo-court do? And I replied that the statutory penalty under the British Columbia “Human Rights” Code was that Maclean’s, Canada’s biggest-selling news weekly, and by extension any other publication, would be forbidden henceforth to publish anything by me about Islam, Europe, terrorism, demography, welfare, multiculturalism, and various related subjects. And that this prohibition would last forever, and was deemed to have the force of a supreme-court decision. I would in effect be rendered unpublishable in the land of my birth. In theory, if a job opened up for dance critic or gardening correspondent, I could apply for it, although if the Royal Winnipeg Ballet decided to offer Jihad: The Ballet for its Christmas season I’d probably have to recuse myself. And what I found odd about this was that very few other people found it odd at all. Indeed, the Canadian establishment seems to think it entirely natural that the Canadian state should be in the business of lifetime publication bans, just as the Dutch establishment thinks it entirely natural that the Dutch state should put elected leaders of parliamentary opposition parties on trial for their political platforms, and the French establishment thinks it appropriate for the French state to put novelists on trial for sentiments expressed by fictional characters. Across almost all the Western world apart from America, the state grows ever more comfortable with micro-regulating public discourse—and, in fact, not-so-public discourse: Lars Hedegaard, head of the Danish Free Press Society, has been tried, been acquitted, had his acquittal overruled, and been convicted of “racism” for some remarks about Islam’s treatment of women made (so he thought) in private but taped and released to the world. … Now England is Little Stasi-on-Avon, a land where, even if you’re well out of earshot of the gay-outreach officer, an infelicitous remark in the presence of a co-worker or even co-playmate is more than sufficient. Fourteen-year-old Codie Stott asked her teacher at Harrop Fold High School whether she could sit with another group to do her science project as in hers the other five pupils spoke Urdu and she didn’t understand what they were saying. The teacher called the police, who took her to the station, photographed her, fingerprinted her, took DNA samples, removed her jewelry and shoelaces, put her in a cell for three and a half hours, and questioned her on suspicion of committing a Section Five “racial public-order offence.”

9/11 and the Successful War
excerpt: It has been 10 years since 9/11, and all of us who write about such things for a living are writing about it. That causes me to be wary. I prefer being the lonely voice, but the fact is that 9/11 was a defining moment in American history. On Sept. 12, 2001, few would have anticipated the course the resulting war would take — but then, few knew what to think. The nation was in shock. In retrospect, many speak with great wisdom about what should have been thought about 9/11 at the time and what should have been done in its aftermath. I am always interested in looking at what people actually said and did at the time. The country was in shock, and shock was a reasonable response. The country was afraid, and fear was a reasonable response. Ten years later, we are all much wiser and sure that our wisdom was there from the beginning. But the truth is that, in retrospect, we know we would have done things superbly had we the authority. Few of us are being honest with ourselves. We were all shocked and frightened. Our wisdom came much later, when it had little impact. Yes, if we knew then what we know now we would have all bought Google stock. But we didn’t know things then that we know now, so it is all rather pointless to lecture those who had decisions to make in the midst of chaos. (Excellent article; particularly the latter half. The overall conclusion was apparent long ago, but this Administration and some of our Generals were in denial. Our counterinsurgency strategy and related nation building in Afghanistan was a failed strategy, and the idea of creating some form of democracy is naïve. Obama said he would win in Afghanistan where Bush had failed. Defeating the Taliban is not going to happen, and that should have been realized early on. The positive outcome of our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan may have been to preclude another major attack on the homeland; but, that could be over rated as al-Qaeda has just moved to Yemen and Somalia. Another dangerous radical group called the Neo-Taliban has surfaced in Pakistan and could ultimately be more dangerous than al-Qaeda. Patience and desire to plan an attack worse than 9/11 could be the reason we have not been attacked again. --GBH)

Marco Rubio's courageous speech
Excerpt: Florida's young Republican Sen. Marco Rubio gave an important speech at the Reagan Presidential Library in California that has set off the liberal talking head universe. He had the temerity to suggest that the huge growth in government's role in American life over the last century "actually weakened us as a people." The resulting onslaught from liberal blogs and cable hosts comes as no surprise because Rubio directly took on the idol at which liberals worship -- Big Government. But his analysis was courageous and profound. Eighty percent of Americans are not happy with the direction of the country. And, new Gallup polling shows that only 17 percent are positively disposed toward the federal government. Americans want answers. Rubio, in this speech, stepped up to the plate to provide answers.

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