Thursday, February 28, 2013

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for March 1, 2013

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for March 1, 2013
Robert A. Hall
Your one-stop-shop for political news and opinion. Please forward to friends who need to be informed. This SitRep (Military for “Situation Report”) is created by many readers who send me items for inclusion, which I would have likely missed or skipped. And I can only spend at most three hours a night pulling stuff, plus the healthcare or economic stuff that crosses my desk at work. As always, I—and you—owe them thanks and appreciation. I post articles because I think they are of interest and will stimulate thought and discussion. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article, or that I was able to verify the information presented, which is the responsibility of the author. I try not to post things that are false, or too far a stretch, regardless of the view point, but I don’t always succeed. As always on the Net, or in the legacy media, you must read critically and with skepticism.

Guest Post: Y2K Revisited With Sequestration

Must Read: American Recessional. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: Republicans and Democrats are blaming one another for impending cuts to the defense budget brought about by sequestration. But with serial annual deficits of $1 trillion-plus and an aggregate debt nearing $17 trillion, the United States -- like an insolvent Rome and exhausted Great Britain of the past -- was bound to re-examine its expensive overseas commitments and strategic profile. (God of our Fathers, Known of old, Lord of our far flung Battle Line, Beneath whose awful hand we hold, Dominion over palm and pine, Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet, lest we forget, lest we forget. –Kipling A poem worth reading. ~Bob)

Best older posts for new blog readers

Congressman Takes No [Bleep] From Obama. By Quin Hillyer
Excerpt: Sophomore U.S. Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kansas, graduated first in his class at West Point, graduated from Harvard Law School, had a hugely successful career in the aerospace industry, and also has a think-tank background. He may be a seriously rising star. Anyway, he put out a self-explanatory press release that is a beauty to behold. Take that, Mr. Obama!

Woodward at war
Excerpt: Digging into one of his famous folders, Woodward said the tirade was followed by a page-long email from the aide, one of the four or five administration officials most closely involved in the fiscal negotiations with the Hill. ….. “You’re focusing on a few specific trees that give a very wrong impression of the forest. … I think you will regret staking out that claim.” (Boy, it hasn’t taken long for the leftwing media to throw leftie Woodward under the Obama Campaign Bus. ~Bob.)

Media on Woodward when reporting on a Republican: Genius! Icon! Legend! Media on Woodward when reporting on Obama: Senile! Crazy! Amateur!

Tweet from @eScarry
Steve Kornacki on MSNBC just made a joke about Bob Woodward being "found dead" this morning.

White House To Woodward: “You’ll Regret Challenging Us’
Excerpt: Bob Woodward has revealed that a "senior" White House official warned he would "regret challenging them" with a story about the origin of sequester. Given how Woodward earned his stripes as a reporter, the White House must have felt the issue was very important indeed.

Excerpt:….Bob Woodward’s reporting has spoiled Obama’s plan. That plan was to blame the entire sequester on Republicans, then allow the cuts to hit, and blame them again. Woodward reported that the sequester was the Obama White House’s idea, blowing the plan to bits.

Woodward: “Madness…I haven’t seen in a long time”
Excerpt: A reasonable President would act to minimize the alleged impact of the coming cuts. Not Obama. He is bent on maximizing the damage because he is not getting the obeisance he demands . That is madness.

Worth Reading: All the President’s Thugs. By J. Christian Adams
Excerpt: It borrows tactics and standards from the darker figures in history — threats, projection, unrepentant dishonesty, towering columns in stadiums, and even bloody mayhem like Fast and Furious hatched for political purposes. Richard Nixon seems like a fluffy kitten compared to this crowd. Which brings us back to you, Mr. Woodward. What’s happened when you, of all people, are the bad guy?

Why Bob Woodward's Fight With The White House Matters to You--(ANOTHER "liberal in good standing" - National Journal reporter Ron Fournier - outs Obama.)
Excerpt: The fight between the White House and journalistic legend Bob Woodward is a silly distraction to a major problem: The failure of President Obama and House Republicans to lead the country under a budget deadline. Woodward-gate is a distraction the White House welcomed, even encouraged, as part of a public-relations strategy to emasculate the GOP and anybody else who challenges Obama. It is a distraction that briefly enveloped my reporting last weekend, when I essentially broke ties with a senior White House official. Yes, I iced a source–and my only regret is I didn’t do it sooner. (What about Senate Democrats? ~Bob)

Lanny Davis: Obama White House Threatened Washington Times Over My Column
Excerpt: Lanny Davis, who served under President Bill Clinton as special counsel to the White House, told Washington, D.C.'s WMAL this morning that the Obama White House had threatened the Washington Times over his column, warning that the Times would suffer limited access to White House officials and might have its White House credentials revoked. Davis, a centrist Democrat, is sometimes critical of the Obama administration's policies. (Tell me, you still have family in Deutschland, Nicht Wahr? ~Bob.

Excerpt: As sequestration D-Day approaches courtesy of President Barack Obama, nicknamed “President Armageddon” by the Wall Street Journal, to be followed in a month by the debt-ceiling deadline, it’s important to understand just how completely the nation’s establishment press has not only abandoned its obligations in ways our Founders never anticipated, but has also chosen to become a team of de facto presidential advisers.

Excerpt: Shortly before U.S. troops stormed Iraq to oust its dictator, Saddam Hussein released thousands of prisoners from Iraqi jails. Some were petty criminals, some were hardcore, some were terrorists. Hussein unleashed them to build his own popularity and to sow chaos. Today, Barack H. Obama’s Department of Homeland Security is doing this:

Lawmakers Determined to Override Obama’s ‘Workplace Violence’ Classification of Fort Hood: Despite the veto threat and snail's-pace prosecution of Hasan -- and the fact that the media "let this thing go."
Excerpt: On Wednesday, the court-martial of accused Fort Hood gunman Major Nidal Hasan will creep forward at its glacial pace with a motions hearing to hear defense requests on a change of venue and the makeup of the panel that will potentially hear the case. Facing 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder — and potentially the death penalty — Hasan’s trial has been delayed several months by his growth of a beard not permitted on service members. Still, the movement in Hasan’s case is swifter than the move toward any resolution of the grievances of victims and survivors of the Nov. 5, 2009, mass slaying.

Excerpt: America’s muddle in Afghanistan is not merely an unwise policy. Two prominent American authors — one a serious analyst (and former badass warrior), the other a bestselling novelist (who created one of our biggest badass heroes) — worry that it is an affront to American manhood as well. For years Bing West has argued that our carrot with no stick approach to counterinsurgency and nation building in Afghanistan is sapping the “martial spirit” of our armed forces.

Is Obama Losing His Media Allies Over The Sequester?
Excerpt: Last seen helping Obama during one of the presidential debates, Crowley was incredulous at what Obama's transportation secretary, Ray LaHood, was saying about sequester-caused air travel nightmares. Even with the budget cuts, she said, the FAA will have "$500 million more than 2008, (when) the planes were running just fine," adding, "surely there must be things inside the FAA budget where you can get rid of 4%." (Wishful thinking. They are vested in The One. Like hoping the Pope converts to the LDS. ~Bob.)

American Student Punished for Refusing to Recite Mexican Pledge
Excerpt: A Texas high school student has filed a federal lawsuit against her school and her teachers after she was punished for refusing to salute and recite the Mexican pledge of allegiance. Ironically, the school district has a policy that prohibits a school from compelling students to recite the American Pledge of Allegiance.

Excerpt: The article below clearly illustrates how unsustainable our health care system has become. The government-mandated cost-shifting began far before the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The insidious, opaque shifting of costs for medical care began in earnest with the McCarran–Ferguson Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1011-1015, which exempts health insurance from anti-trust laws that are applicable to every single other area of commerce. Where else do you have to literally purchase goods or services FIRST before you can find out how much it costs? This allows price-fixing within the industry, opaque kick-backs and worst of all, monopolies for the health insurance companies.

Rare superbug emerging in U.S. elicits advisory warning from CDC
Excerpt: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is alerting clinicians of an emerging untreatable multidrug-resistant organism in the United States.
There are many forms of Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), but of the 37 forms reported in the U.S., 15 have been reported in less than a year. The CDC said the increase in CRE means health care providers need to “act aggressively to prevent the emergence and spread of these unusual CRE organisms.”

Vietnam Vet Barred From Owning A Gun Because Of A Teenage Misdemeanor 45 Years Ago
Excerpt: A 19-year-old sailor stationed in AnnapolisMd., in 1968 was arrested for getting into a fight with an alleged member of a street gang. Now, more than four decades later, the 64-year-old U.S. Navy veteran has been stripped of his right to own a gun. Jefferson Wayne Schrader of ClevelandGa., has been fighting a losing battle in the courts since 2008 to get his name off the fed’s firearm ban list.

Democrats complain about presence of debt clock on Capitol Hill [VIDEO]
Excerpt: During a House Financial Services Committee hearing Tuesday on the budget, two Democrats complained after House Financial Services Committee chairman Jeb Hensarling instructed that two monitors in the hearing room display a real-time running national debt clock. California Rep. Maxine Waters and Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison both issued complaints about the displays, according to video of the hearing.

House Homeland Security Committee Chair demands answers from ICE on illegal 
Excerpt: "I am also concerned that these releases were undertaken without notification to the appropriate Congressional oversight committees.” McCaul demands that by March 6 Morton explain how many individuals ICE has released, the number of detainees marked for release, a timeline of future release dates and where the detainees have and will be released. For each individual detainee released, McCaul requested ICE to provide the reason they were detained, the amount of time, and what is being done to monitor them upon release.

Excerpt: The Associated Press reported Wednesday that an official with the Department of Homeland Security has resigned amid questions over why the Obama administration released illegal immigrants across the country ahead of March 1 budget cuts:….In an email obtained Wednesday by the AP, Gary Mead told coworkers that he was leaving U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at the end of April. Mead is the head of enforcement and removal operations at ICE. (Free-range Democrats. ~Bob)

How China is enslaving the world: Beijing's ruthless leaders subjugate armies of foreign workers with opium, plunder resources across the globe - and now they've got Britain in their sights
Excerpt: So who can afford to stay there? Increasingly, the answer is the world’s fast-growing army of multi-millionaires from China. Three years ago, the Chinese comprised just four per cent of the hotel’s guests. Now they make up almost a third. Not so long ago, one party from Beijing booked 50 rooms. (Our thanks to Stan in the UK. Don't blame the Chinese. Blame the traitors, from Kissinger and Nixon to the US Congress in the US and from national governments to the EU Commission in Europe, for empowering them. Also blame the "greens" who devised the Kyoto Treaty, an agreement to force Western powers to operate factories under environmental regs that would force most of them to shut down, while exempting the Chinese--who are allowed to pollute to their hearts content. This laissez faire policy toward China coupled with unrealistically harsh policies for the West is why air pollution this week is reported to be the worst on record, at 2.5 ppm of particulates, belched from factories making our products, even as our industries lie idle!
We gave them carte blanche, so don't blame them. The West capitulated, years ago, to this silent army. --Don Hank

Muslim Congressman Was Farrakhan Spokesman: Evidence indicates he acted as 'representative' for Nation of Islam
Excerpt: Fresh from an interview dustup with the Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity, the first Muslim elected to Congress still is unable to explain evidence that his association with the anti-Semitic, anti-white Nation of Islam was much closer than he has claimed. Newspaper reports from the 1990s indicate Ellison was known as a supporter and activist for Louis Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam, even speaking on behalf of the controversial group as a “representative.” The information and timeline provided by the newspaper reports are at odds with Ellison’s public explanation of his association with the group.

FCC Is Third Most Expensive Agency of Federal Government: High Cost of Spectrum Management, Broadband Regulation Biggest Problems. By Christine Hall, Ryan Young
Excerpt: Somewhat surprisingly, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is the third most expensive agency when it comes to the costs imposed on Americans by its regulations. According to a report released today by the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Center for Technology and Information, Americans spend $142 billion per year to comply with FCC regs. That puts the FCC behind only the Department of Health and Human Services ($184.8 billion) and Environmental Protection Agency ($353 billion), in terms of costs of regulations.

Currency wars and the paradox of global thrift. By John H. Makin
Excerpt: Especially in Europe but in most of the G20 countries, austerity policies have reduced aggregate demand, therefore stunting gross-domestic-product growth. The primary mode of stimulating these economies has been to pursue quantitative easing (QE), which amounts to printing money. This combination of fiscal austerity and expansionary monetary policy, known as easy-money-tighter-fiscal policy (EMTF), has led to weak currencies as the majority of G20 countries have collectively pursued EMTF. At the same time, Japan’s central bank is now contemplating an antideflationary, currency-weakening policy, threatening a currency war with China and other Asian economies.

License to Drill: The Case for Modernizing America’s Crude Oil and Natural Gas Export Licensing Systems. By Scott Lincicome
Excerpt: Revolutionary extraction technologies have helped increase the supply of fossil fuels in the United States, driving down prices, spurring economic activity, and potentially reversing the longtime status of the United States as a net energy importer to a significant exporter. Impeding that transition are outdated federal regulations—in particular discretionary export licensing systems for natural gas and crude oil—that restrict exports, distort domestic energy prices, deter investment, and encourage graft. They also subvert some of the Obama administration stated policy objectives and could run afoul of U.S. international trade obligations.

Excerpt: Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Monday he believed outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton "got away with murder" on her testimony on last year's terrorist attack in Benghazi….How could you have a clear-eyed view of the threats in Benghazi when you didn’t know about the ambassador’s cable coming back from Libya?" U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens sent the State Department a cable warning of "unpredictable, volatile and violent" security conditions in Libya a month before the attack on an American compound in Benghazi, Libya, that left him and three other foreign service workers dead. (As long as the media views its job as promoting progressives, we have no chance to right the country. ~Bob.)

Christian women's group fires back at SNL's 'DJesus Uncrossed' parody
Excerpt: "SNL has, of course, always enjoyed their ability to offend in the past, but at least one could count on them to have the nerve to take on everyone equally," Concerned Women for America President Penny Nance said in a statement. "Today, SNL would NEVER have the nerve to mock Islam as it did Christianity. They would never be brave enough to run a skit mocking Mohammad at any time — let alone during Ramadan." (Of course, this is NBC, folks. Per the article, Jesus was portrayed as seeking revenge on those who tortured and murdered Him. Quite a twist from those who have had NDEs (Near-Death Experiences) and report encounters with Jesus or God or a Being of Light and describe Him as unconditionally loving and all forgiving. Consider the source. –Barb.)

The left's science deniers. By Glenn Garvin
Excerpt: The losers in this case are the luddite shock troops of progressivism like Greenpeace. And the winners are the children of the Philippines, thousands of whom will not go blind or die because the anti-science wing of modern liberalism finally is getting some pushback. The Filipino government has finally approved the planting of genetically modified rice that contains vitamin A.

Golden goose eggs. By George Will
Excerpt: Today the Fed’s second mission is to maximize employment, and Chairman Ben Bernanke construes the dual mandate as a single, capacious assignment — “promoting a healthy economy.” But the Fed’s hubris ignores the fact that it anticipated neither the Great Depression that began in 1929 nor the Great Recession that began five years ago. The Fed failed to cure the former, and today’s unprecedentedly anemic recovery — approximately 3 million fewer people are working than were five years ago — has failed to cure the latter: If the workforce participation rate were as high as it was when Barack Obama was first inaugurated, the unemployment rate would be 10.8 percent.

Excerpt: Attorney General Eric Holder on Tuesday warned that if the $85 billion in across-the-board spending cuts go through as scheduled on March 1, law enforcement officials won’t be able to adequately perform their jobs and the country will become “less safe” to live in. “Our capacity to respond to crimes, to investigate wrong-doing, and to hold criminals accountable will be reduced,” Holder told the National Association of Attorneys General at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Washington, D.C. (His resignation would make it more safe. ~Bob.)

Introducing the Department of Peacebuilding
Excerpt: Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA) has introduced a bill that I think it’s important everyone know about. You may remember that when then-candidate Barack Obama was running for office in 2008, he said, “We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives we’ve set. We’ve got to have a civilian national security force that’s just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded.”

The Terrifying Line in Obama's Speech That Everyone Missed
The Terrifying Line in Obama's Speech That Everyone Missed -
Excerpt:….But while everyone was picking apart these and other flaws in Obama's speech, they overlooked the most frightening line of all. That was when Obama promised that he'd pursue "the kind of bold, persistent experimentation that Franklin Roosevelt pursued during the only crisis worse than this one."… "From the point of view of a business," Shlaes said in a 2009 interview, "it is annihilating to hear Washington uncertain, and that itself retards recovery because you really don't know what to expect." (Boy are we finding out; experiments with command economics a la USSR. And that did not work for them. Capitalism over there now—Since the meteor fell, reports of 100s trying to find chunks in the Urals, guiding visitors to the fall fields, booths selling refreshments and vendors with ET T-shirt stands….Barb)

US drugs prosecutors switch sides to defend accused Colombian traffickers: After working to take down cartels, former officials say America's 'war on drugs' is misguided and the human cost too high
US prosecutors and other senior officials who spearheaded the war against drug cartels have quit their jobs to defend Colombian cocaine traffickers, saying their clients are not bad people and that United States drug policy is wrong. Senior former assistant US attorneys and Drug Enforcement Administration agents are turning years of experience in investigating, indicting and extraditing narcos to the advantage of the alleged traffickers they now represent. "I'm not embarrassed about the fact that I changed sides," said Robert Feitel, a Washington-based attorney who used to pursue traffickers and money launderers at the Department of Justice. (Per article, these former US federal agents want cocaine and Cannabis legalized. If it’s too much trouble to enforce the law, support the cartels and the criminals. Wonder what their cut is? –Barb)

Four men found guilty of sharia law whipping
Excerpt: FOUR men who took part in the whipping of a Muslim convert to punish him for drinking alcohol and taking drugs have been found guilty of assault. The Sydney case is believed to be the first in an Australian court relating to such punishment being meted out under the pretext of sharia, or Islamic law. (Now, now, the NYT and some Federal Courts tell us there is nothing wrong with Shari’a Law—just there culture and all cultures are equally valid, you know. ~Bob)

Lebanese Muslim lecturer: "The Zionists made an agreement with Hitler"; rich Jews sent poor Jews to the "so-called Holocaust"

Can Obama Be Stopped? By Daniel Greenfield 
Excerpt: The big mistake of the last election was assuming that public dissatisfaction with Obama would be enough to remove him. Reagan’s defeat of Carter was frequently invoked without understanding that Reagan’s victory lay in his ability to communicate to the public why they were worse off now and why they would be better off with a change of government, not in some abstract national sense, but in a way that would directly impact their wallets. Reagan focused on inflation. What did Romney focus on?

Excerpt: A spokeswoman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, an arm of the Department of Homeland Security, said the thousands of detainees selected for release over the past week – among an estimated 8,000 – 10,000 scheduled for release – were “noncriminals and other low-risk offenders who do not have serious criminal histories.” This is a blatant lie. The aliens released by DHS are criminals, who will put families and communities at greater risk from coast-to-coast.

The European Union caps the only bit of bankers' pay that is performance-related. My masters, are you mad? By Danial Hannan 
Excerpt: The EU’s decision to cap bonuses (at 100 per cent of salary, or 200 per cent if shareholders say so) makes no sense even as an anti-banker measure. If your problem is with rewards for failure, you should want the highest possible proportion of remuneration to be in the form of a performance-related bonus. Not that this would justify governments interfering with private contracts. 

House GOP decision to move VAWA bill causes conservatives unease
Excerpt: A number of House conservatives are unhappy with the Republican leadership’s decision to allow for the passage on Thursday of a Senate-passed reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act.

Maybe we need a “Violence Against Men” act?
Excerpt: Women hitting men: In 1968-69 and 1970-71. I found something that I just ignored. I was so focused on the issue of wife beating, and the feminist perspective of this, which is the way I approached it, that at first I didn’t hardly recognize that I’d found about equal rates of their fathers hitting their mother and mothers hitting their father. And in my early papers I reported it. It’s there as a statistic, but I didn’t discuss it. (Nah. Men voted for Romney. ~Bob.)

Excerpt: Well, who said the Occupy movement is dead? They were out in force this week protesting legislation that might approve the Keystone Pipeline meant to bring cheap oil down from Canada and reduce gas prices. The Occupiers hate big oil because they make money...and anyone who makes money are the arch enemy of the Occupy movement. While it was perfectly okay for their idol, Obama, to squander $200 billion dollars in bankrupt solar companies, the occupiers will give no quarter to the oil companies who keep our nation's economy moving.

The Real Meaning Of The Term 'Islamist'
Excerpt: The AP Stylebook, the authority on usage style for most U.S. newspapers and TV networks, defines "Islamists," perhaps the most contentious word today, as Muslims who view the Koran as a "political model." These Muslims range from "mainstream politicians" to "militants known as jihadi." Islamist in this political context is thus distinctive from Muslim, a religious term referring to followers of Islam.

Gun Control Works

Fortunately, The West will 'fall' like Rome
I am hearing from a lot of you as to the fate of the West. It is a topic that concerns most of you in fact. Some say we are doomed, others say there will be a revolution. To one UK correspondent who said 'there must be a revolution,' I responded thusly: Sorry to say, western man (Homo Occidentalis, you might say) is so weakened and brainwashed at this point he probably is unfit for any sort of revolution beyond burning tires on the street, getting tear-gassed by the cops and then crying for his mommy. If you read what Gibbons said about the Roman Empire, you will probably have a good idea of what comes next.
And I say that by way of consolation. The Roman Empire never actually died. Likewise, great Empires like the US and the EU are the envy of everyone (except themselves), and their traditional culture is always prized by the barbarians who take them over. So much so that the traditions are carried on much better by the conquerors than they were by the conquered, who eventually came to neglect them. What happened after the barbarians took over Rome? Why, Latin became the language of academe, medicine and the clergy for centuries. Roman Catholicism was adopted all over Europe. And France, Spain and Italy adopted dialects of Latin that are still spoken today. Europe still adopts Roman law and the Roman way of government has heavily influenced America. And what alphabet do we use? Look for Russia and China to be the carriers of our proud culture in the future, including the Christianity that we refused to defend and preserve. Russia is already becoming the standard bearer for Christianity in the West. They opposed the creation of the Muslim state of Kosovo and now oppose the overthrow of Syria's Assad, the last Christian friendly leader in the entire Muslim world. And of course, they take the same view as the Apostle Paul on a certain sexual orientation whose name we no longer dare mention for fear of reprisal, thanks to a complete reversal of the First Amendment, a reversal not enforced by the government itself but rather by our institutions and a zombie-like populace. In China, thanks to burgeoning house churches, it will become impossible to ban Christianity, which will spread among the government itself. Both nations will treasure our traditions and will preserve them much better than we have, though that is not saying much. --Don Hank

Teacher pink slips claim by Duncan not backed by evidence
Excerpt: When he was pressed in a White House briefing Wednesday to come up with an example, Duncan named a single county in West Virginia and acknowledged, “whether it’s all sequester-related, I don’t know.” And, as it turns out, it isn’t. 9he works for Obama, who brought him from Chicago. Of course he lies. ~Bob.)

Why Female Gun Ownership is Up 77% Since 2005. By Celia Bigelow 
Excerpt: As the number of proposed gun-control measures increase rapidly across the country, the amount of women purchasing guns is increasing even faster. A survey conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation found that 73 percent of gun dealers reported an increase in female customers in 2011, as well as the previous two years. In 2005, just 13 percent of gun owners were women. Today, that number is 23 percent--a 77 percent increase in 7 years.

The Problem with Turkey's "Zero Problems." By Ilias I. Kouskouvelis
Under the Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi, AKP), Turkey's foreign policy has been associated with the prescriptions and efforts of three men: Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President Abdullah Gül, and Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu.

On pipeline, unions take a back seat to Big Green
Excerpt: The Keystone XL Pipeline project has been endorsed by numerous unions, including those representing laborers, builders, pipefitters, electrical workers and the building trades. With the country still hurting from the recession, they are eager to get in on the estimated 20,000 jobs the project will create.

Final Notice E-Mail
This is the final notification of your member status before tonight’s FEC deadline. You have just a few hours left to throw your support behind President Obama’s agenda. The status associated with this email address is below: Name: Bob Hall. Supporter record: 9592858. 2013 Membership: Pending. This week has shattered our expectations: We’re just 2,200 members away from hitting 100,000 new members for the year. Let’s step up, crush our goal, and render the Republicans speechless. Midnight Deadline: Click this personalized link to renew your membership and support President Obama’s agenda. (Oh, sure, he slights me in invites to the SOTU speech, but now he wants three bucks from me! ~Bob.)

High-flying Holder: Report shows AG, FBI director used luxury jets for personal travel
Excerpt: Two high-tech luxury jets that the FBI convinced Congress were needed for the fight against global terrorism have instead been used to ferry around Attorney General Eric Holder and his predecessors, as well as FBI Director Robert Mueller, according to a government report released Thursday. Those officials -- which included Holder and Mueller, as well as former Attorneys General Michael Mukasey and Alberto Gonzales -- racked up nearly 700 "nonmission" trips between 2007 and 2011, at a cost of $11.4 million, according to the Government Accountability Office. 

Coptic Activist: U.S. Needs to Stand for Freedom in Egypt
Excerpt: News reports from Egypt focus on protests against the new Muslim Brotherhood-dominated government and other national political developments. But each week brings a new set of attacks on the country's Christian minority, attacks that often are overlooked by western media Just this week, Muslims tried to block expansion of a Coptic church.

DIY Weapons of the Syrian Rebels
Interesting pictures. ~Bob

All The Money We're Pouring Into Emerging Markets Has Created A Massive Bubble. By Jesse Colombo
Excerpt: Encouraged by the rise of China and India in the past decade, investors and economic commentators have eagerly looked toward other emerging market nations in hopes of finding "The Next China" – or at least the next country to supply the raw materials that China needs for its construction-driven growth boom and bubble (which entails the building of empty cities to create economic growth)

Man Dies After South African Police Tie Him To Van And Drag Him (Warning: Disturbing Video)
Excerpt: hey bound his hands to the rear of a van, and then sped off, dragging the slender taxi driver along the pavement as a crowd of onlookers shouted in dismay. Following the horrific scene, the man was later found dead. A gut-wrenching video of the scene is all the more disturbing because the men who abused the Mozambican immigrant were uniformed South African police officers and the van was a marked police vehicle. (Wait. I though black rule made South Africa an enlightened paradise? ~Bob.)

Collin Brewer, British Councillor, Condemned For Saying Disabled Children Should Be 'Put Down'
Excerpt: A local politician in Britain has found himself at the center of an angry controversy in his district, after inflammatory comments he made about disabled children were widely circulated. (Doesn’t say what side of the political debate he’s on, but…~Bob.)

Abdelhamid Abu Zeid, Al Qaeda Commander, Reportedly Killed In Mali
Excerpt: French forces in Mali have killed Abdelhamid Abu Zeid, a leading field commander of al Qaeda's north Africa wing AQIM, Algerian Ennahar television reported on Thursday. (Vive la France! ~Bob.)

Widespread Welfare Fraud Found in California
Show me your shocked face. ~Bob.

Too Funny: Maxine Waters: 'Over 170 Million Jobs Could Be Lost' Due To Sequestration
Excerpt: Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) claimed today that "over 170 million jobs" could be lost due to sequestration. (Scared me. For a minute, I thought she said 170 billion! I think 170 million is more than the total US workforce, counting the military. ~Bob.)

A Hero Among Us
Excerpt: The citation continues to read, “Captain Nobles served as a stalwart example of combat leadership and routinely moved to key locations despite the ferocity of enemy attacks encountered by him and his men. During numerous direct engagements with enemy forces, Captain Nobles exposed himself to accurate and sustained fires to emplace, coordinate, and direct the fires of his men, as well as supporting arms, onto the enemy.” (Reflect on that as you remember that Panetta has proposed a medal for drone pilots that would rank higher in precedence and importance than the medal received by Capt. Nobles. Does that signify that the new Distinguished Warfare Medal will require a higher sense of duty and courage in battle than what Capt. Nobles displayed? --MasterGuns)

Guest Post: Y2K Revisited With Sequestration

Y2K Revisited With Sequestration
By Colonel Donald J. Myers USMC(Ret)

The sky is falling, the sky is falling, the sky is falling!!! Do you remember all of the fear that was created during 1999 about what was about to occur when the clock hit midnight on New Years Eve and the year turned to 2000? Banks would collapse, airplanes would fall out of the sky, and computers all over the world would crash. That and many more disasters were predicted because computers were set to identify the last two numbers of the year and no plans had been developed to recognize 00. Midnight occurred and very few problems arose. Do you remember?

Now we have sequestration scheduled to occur in two days as I write this article. The fear is unbelievable about what will happen. Because of the sequester, the federal government will be required to reduce spending that amounts to less than three percent of the total budget ($44 billion). However for the entire year, the government will increase spending over what it spent last year. Remember that last year we spent over a trillion dollars more than we brought in on taxes, and we did the same for the previous three years. We have added nearly five trillion dollars to the debt in the past four years.

This sequester has been in the works for 18 months and the only thing that our leaders in Washington have done is talk about it and point fingers. President Obama has warned in travels all over the country that teachers will be laid off, the border will be less secure, police and firemen will be laid off, Head Start will be reduced, airports will close, etc, etc. On Wednesday, thousands of illegal aliens were released from jail because of impending cuts. The White House press secretary reported that it had no input concerning that decision but it was the Homeland Security Administration. Shortly thereafter Homeland Security declared that individuals from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials decided to release these individuals. The buck is really being passed around.

The Associated Press (AP) reported on Wednesday that the latest poll shows that only 25% of the people are paying any attention to sequestration reporting. They are tired of all the fear mongering that constantly takes place from one crisis to the next. They say that this is the norm for Washington and at the last minute they make some type of deal. Are they finally catching on to the game?

Recently, President Obama, former Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid all stated that spending was not a problem. Unfortunately, I believe that they truly do not think that it is. They remind me of people who think that if they have blank checks in their check book, then they have money. Rational educated people know that that is foolish thinking. Deficits have been a problem in the past and each time growth of the economy came to the rescue. Unfortunately with this administration the ability of the economy to grow has been significantly hampered because of all the new regulations that are constantly being introduced.

As a Marine officer I learned early on that the troops responded best when they were told the truth no matter how bad it was. I'm sure that my previous four years as an enlisted Marine contributed to that thought process. I am not unique in that thought and I believe that most Americans feel the same. We are adults and we want the truth from our political leaders. We do not appreciate it when they try to get our support by trying to scare us with false data. It is well past the time when our politicians need to live in the real world. I doubt if any of them run their own lives as they do the government.


I remember Y2K well. Folks were amazed that my wife and I went to Scotland for Hogmanay (New Year's Eve) in 1999. We knew it was BS. Had a wonderful time. ~Bob Hall

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for February 28, 2013

Old Jarhead's Political SitRep for February 28, 2013
Robert A. Hall
Your one-stop-shop for political news and opinion. Please forward to friends who need to be informed. This SitRep (Military for “Situation Report”) is created by many readers who send me items for inclusion, which I would have likely missed or skipped. And I can only spend at most three hours a night pulling stuff, plus the healthcare or economic stuff that crosses my desk at work. As always, I—and you—owe them thanks and appreciation. I post articles because I think they are of interest and will stimulate thought and discussion. Doing so doesn’t mean that I necessarily agree (or disagree) with every—or any—opinion in the posted article, or that I was able to verify the information presented, which is the responsibility of the author. I try not to post things that are false, or too far a stretch, regardless of the view point, but I don’t always succeed. As always on the Net, or in the legacy media, you must read critically and with skepticism.

While I appreciate all the kind folks endorsing me on Linked In, sending links to Google apps or sending Facebook links, I don’t use these programs. No time. Zero. I link to or friend those who ask, used Facebook to promote my books and Google for the blog and e-mail. Period. Thanks, but sorry. Maybe in my next life. ~Bob

Charities I support

Excerpt: As I began to reflect on that fact, it occurred to me that this phenomenon goes way beyond health care. Milton Friedman’s Capitalism and Freedom is a classic example of using economic analysis to make the case for a free economy. In it, Friedman argues for school vouchers, a flat tax, an end to occupational licensing, private savings rather than Social Security, a monetary rule, etc. Is there any comparable book on the left, using economics to defend liberal institutions against these reforms? I believe the answer is “no.” Let’s put this a different way. Given that liberalism is the dominant political ideology and given that it largely replaced 19th century classical liberalism, is there a place I can go to find why the proponents think it’s so much better than the ideology it replaced? If the answer is “no,” why is that? The answer, I believe, is that liberalism is not an ideology at all; it is a sociology.

Is President Obama telling the truth about sequestration? By: David Nather
Excerpt: Read President Barack Obama’s state-by-state breakdown of the sequester and you get a dire message: The sky is going to fall on March 1. But a closer read of the detailed reports shows that some of the scariest stuff is going to happen in slow motion — if it happens at all. (I suppose he could be telling the truth—there’s a first time for everything. ~Bob.)

Only in America can a President propose a law, get it passed, and then actively campaign against implementing it #Sequester

Excerpt: Most of us now know that when Obama's lips are moving, he's lying. But perhaps the biggest hoax he ever visited on the American people was his 2008 pledge to be a different type of politician. He said it was time for the lobbyists and power brokers to flee Washington. He promised he would never host lobbyists at the White House. Not only did he break that promise but hired a great many of them for his staff. Then last week our liberal friends, the New York Times reported Obama's spanking new Organizing for Action (OFA), has set up a little "payola" operation whereby anyone who's willing to donate $500,000 dollars to OFA will get access to the White House with warm personal meetings from The Anointed One. You can then "state your case" for a smart, well spoken Chicago lawyer to be your mouthpiece in support of a little "federal green" flowing your way.

Worth Reading: President Barack Obama, electoral munchkin. By Moe Lane
Excerpt: And it turns out that the American Democratic primary system was full of such loopholes, which is why Barack Obama won the nomination in 2008 despite losing almost all the big Democratic primary states (and arguably the popular vote, depending on how you score Michigan). … Barack Obama knows how to do one thing: elect Barack Obama to public office. And that’s not ‘elect Democrats.’ Or ‘elect liberals.’ Or even ‘elect people that Barack Obama likes.’ 

Elaborate surveillance operation raises concerns about broader Hezbollah attacks
Excerpt: Now, seven months after that attack, new details emerging in Yaakoub’s case are providing chilling insights into what investigators describe as a far broader effort by the Lebanon-based militant group to lay the groundwork for killing Israeli citizens and perhaps others in multiple countries. (Once they destroy Israel and slaughter all the Jews to the youngest child, they will not go away. They will come for you. ~Bob.)

Gun control supporter wins Dem primary for Jackson Jr. House seat
Excerpt: Gun control supporter Robin Kelly (D) cruised to victory over former Rep. Debbie Halvorson (D-Ill.), who favors gun rights, on Tuesday in the Democratic primary to replace former Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.), giving supporters of new gun-control laws a big win in Illinois at a key moment in their battle. (Yup, it was gun control, nothing to do with it being an overwhelmingly black district and Halverson being white. High murder rate, but since they already have strict gun laws, have to blame someone—couldn’t be the black thugs murdering black kids daily. Must be lax gun laws in places with low murder rates. Hold on to your wallets—we are sending you another Chicago way Politician. ~Bob.)

Congressional Primary for Anti-Gun Radical. By Joel B. Pollak
Excerpt: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's $2.3 million in campaign spending helped anti-gun radical Robin Kelly win the Democratic primary to replace convicted former Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D) yesterday. Bloomberg joined Obama political adviser David Axelrod, radical Jeremiah Wright ally Father Michael Pfelger, and left-wing Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) in helping Kelly defeat former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, who was once the darling of the party's election machine but became a useful target due to her "A" rating from the National Rifle Association (NRA).

ABC News Admits Editing Out FLOTUS Gun Gaffe
Excerpt: Are we really supposed to believe that ABC News chose to give up what would be an attention-getting story in the interest of "time?" The First Lady of the United States claiming automatic weapons were used in the murder of Hadiya Pendleton is news.
It's just a fact that no one knows what kind of weapon was used. Furthermore, no one really believes the weapon was an automatic.

Senate votes to confirm Hagel
Excerpt: The Senate on Tuesday voted to confirm former Sen. Chuck Hagel as Pentagon chief in a 58-41 vote, ending one of the most contentious confirmation fights for a Defense secretary in U.S. history. Only four Republicans backed Hagel, a former GOP senator from Nebraska whose controversial statements on Israel, Iran and other issues made him a lighting rod on the right and led to the first-ever filibuster of a nominee to lead the Pentagon. (But which Hagel did they confirm? The Anti-Semitic one who railed against Israel and the Jewish Lobby that controlled things, or the newly-contrite one who repudiated everything he ever said? ~Bob.)

Excerpt: Then he made a historical analogy to the world wars that devastated Europe in the last century, and brought on Hitler’s genocide committed against the Jewish people. But in Sen. Hagel’s worldview, the problem was not Hitler. The problem was the United States and bullying world powers.

I am a gun

Republicans & Immigration: Please — just a little truth about illegal immigration. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: Did the issue lose them the Latino vote? Maybe — but why did they also forfeit the Asian vote, and by nearly the same margin? Why did the caricature of Republicans as old white nativists resonate with Asians as well? If support for closing the border and refusing amnesty lost Republicans the election, why do a majority of Americans continue to poll in opposition to any sort of collective amnesty?

Father wants school dress code changed after son asked to remove Marines T-shirt
Excerpt: “My son is very proud of the Marines, and, in fact, of all the services,” McIntyre said. “So he wears it with pride. There are two rifles crossed underneath the word ‘Marines’ on the shirt, but to me that should be overlooked. It’s more about the Marines instead of the rifles.” (Another knee-jerk reaction to a problem that didn't exist. --MasterGuns. The most interesting part of this article is all the people at the school who said the T-shirt is NOT in violation of the dress code. It seems like this one 8th grade teacher decided all on her own to come down on the kid for a shirt he's worn to school many times in the past. She told him the crossed rifles that were part of the artwork were a problem, but it turns out that is not what the dress code says. So I'm waiting to hear the school principal called the teacher in for a little chat about making a problem where there wasn't one. --Del. This doesn't seem like a policy problem, it seems like that particular teacher is the problem. After all, she is most likely a liberal. The principal of the school needed to, and probably did, straighten her out. The dress code seems reasonable, and the administration seems to be supportive of the military. It looks like the father tried to make a big deal out of nothing. A phone call to the principal would have cleared the matter up. As a matter of fact, he probably made things worse for his son's relationship with that teacher. He probably just wanted to get his "outraged" face on Fox news. --LLW)

Education... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading, an easy prey to sensations and cheap appeals. –G. M. Trevelyan.

Propaganda does not deceive people; it merely helps them to deceive themselves. –Eric Hoffer

Carson: No sneak peek for Obama
Excerpt: The White House repeatedly asked Ben Carson for his speech before the rising Republican star criticized President Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast earlier this month. Carson, a prominent neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins University, declined to do so, noting that he doesn’t put his speeches down on paper beforehand. 

In Praise of Income Inequality. By Richard A. Epstein
Excerpt: One approach is to stress the increase in wealth inequality, deploring the gains of the top 1 percent while lamenting the decline in the income of the remainder of the population. But this approach is only half right. We should be uneasy about any and all income declines, period. But, by the same token, we should collectively be pleased by increases in income at the top, so long as they were not caused by taking, whether through taxation or regulation, from individuals at the bottom.

Stimulus Spending Fails to Improve Economy
Excerpt: If studies on the short-run benefits of stimulus spending and the historical reality of public spending are examined, Keynesian macroeconomic policies that support stimulus spending make little sense, says Andrew Young, an associate professor of economics at West Virginia University.

Treachery at the top in Afghanistan. By Ralph Peters
Excerpt: In his latest act of ingrate treachery, Afghan President Hamid Karzai has ordered US Special Forces out of Wardak Province, the back door to Kabul. His demand came two weeks after he halted US close air support for the Afghan National Army, crippling his own military’s capabilities.

Palestinians Exporting Terrorists to Syria. Where Next?
Excerpt: The Palestinians who are heading to Syria have been told their next station will be Jordan, then Israel, where, with their friends in Jabhat al-Nusra, they hope to create an pan-Islamic state ruled by Sharia laws.

Muslim Brotherhood makes move to restrict human rights groups and their funding. By Kristen Chick
Excerpt: A government minister and member of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) has proposed a highly restrictive law that rights activists say would cripple civil society groups in Egypt and mark an alarming shift by the Brotherhood toward the methods of the ousted Hosni Mubarak. (Show me your shocked face. ~Bob.)

Death for Preaching Christ in ‘Liberated’ Libya. By Raymond Ibrahim 
Excerpt: Four foreign Christians—including one who holds American-Swedish citizenship—were arrested days ago in Libya. According to the Guardian, their crime is arousing “suspicion of being missionaries and distributing Christian literature, a charge that could carry the death penalty.”

Police: Slain Bedouin teen likely victim of 'honor killing'
Excerpt: Bedouin man arrested for allegedly throwing 16-year-old daughter down well over 'undesirable romantic involvement.

The Perverse World of Abu Islam
Excerpt: Egyptian Sheikh Abu Islam — of Bible-destroying, rape-approving fame — is again causing drama. In regards to his second claim-to-fame — inciting Muslims to, because they must all be Christian “crusaders” anyway — a lawyer has recently submitted complaints that help provide context for Abu Islam’s “worldview” concerning women: among other things, he is accused of raping a Syrian minor girl, as well as sexually assaulting his own daughter-in-law.

Dominik Neubauer Video: Austrian Hostage In Yemen Appeals For Ransom Money With AK-47 Pointed At His Head
Excerpt: An Austrian man taken hostage in Yemen in December has appeared in a video posted on YouTube, saying he would be killed if ransom money was not paid to a Yemeni tribe within a week.

Iran's 'Plan B' for a nuclear bomb
Excerpt: The Telegraph can disclose details of activity at a heavily-guarded Iranian facility from which international inspectors have been barred for 18 months. The images, taken earlier this month, show that Iran has activated the Arak heavy-water production plant. Heavy water is needed to operate a nuclear reactor that can produce plutonium, which could then be used to make a bomb. (At some point, either we [acting alone or in concert with others] or the Israelis will have no choices left except to either destroy Iran’s ability to produce fissionable materials or reconcile ourselves to losing cities. Seven to ten years ago, this could’ve been done with relatively little risk to us; now, it carries large consequences, and will soon be impossible short of all-out war. Anyone thinking the Iranians would be alone “against the world” needs to realize they are almost certainly allied with the North Koreans, Cubans, Venezuelans, and elements in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and are supported—or at least winked at—by both the Chinese and Russians. Why am I reminded of Sarajevo in 1914—with us playing the part of the Ottoman Empire? --Ron P.)

Vietnam to Participate in UN Peacekeeping Missions
Excerpt: Vietnam says it will begin participating in United Nations peacekeeping operations early next year, a further sign that it wants to assume a bigger role in international affairs. (Interesting to see this. I wonder how serious they are about sending troops abroad on UN missions. If it would make money for the ruling class I've no doubt they'd cheerfully rent out the army. --Del)

Excerpt: Friedman is saying that you cannot trust the Brotherhood, as it seeks total power and is anti-democratic. Hmm: what’s Friedman been saying the last two years? Well, he has been an apologist for the Brotherhood, a cheerleader for the course taken by the “Arab Spring,” and has constantly insisted that the “democratic” revolution is going well. Indeed, in January 2012 I wrote an analysis of Friedman’s coverage titled: “Friedman Cheers as Egyptians are Enslaved.” Now, when it’s too late? Friedman is supposedly outraged to see what’s going on there. Now, he concludes that the Egyptian regime is not democratic at all.

Quotes from The Patriot Post
"Al-Qa'ida has issued a list of 22 ways that al-Qa'ida members can avoid being killed by U.S. drones. Here's a good one: Don't join al-Qa'ida." --comedian Jay Leno

"Joe Biden spoke against assault weapons and advised women to go outside and fire two shots from a double barreled shotgun to scare off intruders. He's so wise. Once an intruder knows your gun is empty he'll gladly go home and leave you alone, ladies." --comedian Argus Hamilton

"Here are some things that will result from the sequestration cuts: All prisons will be shut down and prisoners released. Even the most violent of criminals. ... Medicare will be replaced with a hammer given to old people to kill themselves with. ... Our military will be armed with nothing but bayonets. All traffic lights will be turned off. No more money for cowboy poetry festivals, the only thing keeping cowboys from violence and thus the only thing keeping the wild west from breaking out again. ... No more postage for strongly-worded letters sent to Iran and North Korea telling them to stop having nuclear weapons. Obama will only get five golf outings a month." --humorist Frank J. Fleming

"Sometimes the only thing that keeps me from being pessimistic is knowing that the when the country collapses, the people most responsible will die out in the first winter." --Frank Fleming

Survivors Of Rape Speak Out Against Gun Control: ‘I Was Denied The One Equalizing Factor That I Had.’ By Tiffany Gabbay
Excerpt: What’s more, these guests maintain that their attack might have been prevented if they had been equipped with a means of self-defense. Many of the attacks occurred in gun-free zones, underscoring the reality that people of goodwill were left defenseless, while those with an intent to do harm still found a way to wreak their havoc.

Excerpt: States like California, Illinois and New York already “have more-or-less become European,” argues Samuel Gregg, author of the new book, ”Becoming Europe: Economic Decline, Culture, and How America Can Avoid a European Future.” “At its core, to ‘become like Europe’ is to prioritize the realization of economic security through government intervention over virtually all other considerations,” Gregg, who is director of research at the Acton Institute for the study of religion and liberty, told The Daily Caller in an email. ”That includes competing economic concerns such as fiscal solvency, but also particular values such as human freedom and human flourishing.” (Now I know why I feel link I’m from an alien culture, living in Crook County, IL for my job. ~Bob.)

New Report on Syrian Missiles Shows Extent of Death and Damage
Excerpt: The Syrian government fired at least four ballistic missiles last week that hit civilian neighborhoods in Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, killing more than 141 people, including 71 children, according to a Human Rights Watch report released on Tuesday. (I’m sorry for the kids, but from doing this blog have become numb to the daily toll of Muslims slaughtering fellow Muslims. Sad. ~Bob.)

20 Afghan Police Officers Killed in Two Attacks
Didn’t get the memo. ~Bob. Excerpt: In Ghazni Province, a group of 17 Afghan policemen who had just been trained by Americans were drugged into comatose stupors by comrades, described after the episode as Taliban infiltrators, while on duty. They were then shot to death in what appeared to be the single worst episode in a string of similar attacks, according to Afghan officials and an insurgent spokesman.

Afghan Sign of Progress Turns Out to Be Error
Excerpt: American officials, when looking to quickly illustrate progress in Afghanistan, have in the past few months highlighted a 7 percent drop last year in what they call “enemy-initiated attacks.” Fewer attacks, the reasoning went, meant Afghans were safer and the Taliban were weaker. The problem: There was no decline. The numbers were wrong.

What American accent do you have?
This is interesting. What part of and where in our country is your accent from?

Regulations limit amount that health insurance companies can spend on fraud prevention, testimony reveals. By Andrew Evans
Excerpt: The Department of Health and Human Services is limiting the amount that private insurance companies can invest in fraud prevention, according to testimony at a House subcommittee hearing on Wednesday. … Obamacare “contains perverse incentives for private insurance companies to ignore waste and fraud, which drives up premiums and copayments for consumers,” Pitts said in his opening statement.