Saturday, May 30, 2015

Biden's son dies and other important political news


Well, the grandson, Dale, 3, came home from the hospital today with his arm in a sling. He's a much happier camper. Every time hospital personnel came in his room, including housekeeping, he'd say, "No doctor. No nurse. Go bye-bye." I know how he felt.

Then Britnye had her dance school dance recital this evening. We can't get over both how grown up she is and how graceful she has become. So life goes on. ~Bob

General News and Comment

Beau Biden, son of Vice President Joe Biden, dies of brain cancer

Worth Reading: The ClintonsFavorite Way to Lie. By Jonah Goldberg, the Goldberg File
Excerpt: When my daughter was little more than a toddler, she wrote all over the wall with a pen in my wife’s home office. We confronted her about it. She listened intently, trying hard to be surprised by the news of this defilement of our domicile. “What happened, Lucy?” we asked. After a long and nervous pause, she replied, “I know what happened.” Excited by her own duplicitous inventiveness and restrained by her desire to sell it, she said very seriously, “A bad girl must have come into the house and did this.” She tsk-tsked, “What a bad girl,” shaking her head while looking at the wall. I need not dwell on the implausibility of roving bands of ninja-like naughty toddlers — or lone-wolf munchkins — breaking into nice homes to scribble on the upstairs walls and then depart leaving no other trace of their schemes. I simply bring this up to say that my daughter’s “a bad girl did it” gambit is a wildly more powerful and resolute claim of innocence than “you have no smoking gun.” (This is Friday's Goldberg File, a free e-ewsletter that is worth your time subscribing to, on line on Saturdays. ~Bob)

If Hillary becomes president, who will make her obey the law? By Byron York
Excerpt: Last year, before Hillary Clinton's secret email system became publicly known, Congress passed a law to keep presidents from trying the same trick. If Clinton wins the White House, the law could well be put to the test. The statute is the Presidential and Federal Records Act Amendments of 2014. It recognizes that government officials sometimes (or in Clinton's case, all the time) want to use private email accounts — in the words of the law, "non-official electronic messaging accounts" — to conduct government business. Such communications are still federal records, Congress declared, and must be preserved in accordance with existing laws requiring not just the president but all federal officials to preserve their documents. (I assume she will still be able to take bribes contributions to the Clinton Slush Fund from foreign governments on her private email account? ~Bob

Worth Reading: U.S. Military And Civilians Are Increasingly Divided. By David Zucchino And David S. Cloud
Excerpt: While the U.S. waged a war in Vietnam 50 years ago with 2.7 million men conscripted from every segment of society, less than one-half of 1% of the U.S. population is in the armed services today — the lowest rate since World War II. America's recent wars are authorized by a U.S. Congress whose members have the lowest rate of military service in history, led by three successive commanders in chief who never served on active duty. Surveys suggest that as many as 80% of those who serve come from a family in which a parent or sibling is also in the military. They often live in relative isolation — behind the gates of military installations such as Ft. Bragg or in the deeply military communities like Fayetteville, N.C., that surround them. ... Douglas Pearce, a former Army lieutenant who fought in Afghanistan and is now a marriage and family counselor in Nashville, said civilians seem to think they "can assuage their guilt with five seconds in the airport." "What they're saying is, 'I'm glad you served so that I didn't have to, and my kids won't have to.'"

Democrats' Vanishing Future: Hillary Clinton is not the only Democratic comeback candidate on the 2016 ticket. Senate Democrats are betting on the past to rebuild their party for the future. By Josh Kraushaar
Excerpt: One of the most underappreciated stories in recent years is the deterioration of the Democratic bench under President Obama's tenure in office. The party has become much more ideologically homogenous, losing most of its moderate wing as a result of the last two disastrous midterm elections. By one new catch-all measure, a party-strength index introduced by RealClearPolitics analysts Sean Trende and David Byler, Democrats are in their worst position since 1928. That dynamic has manifested itself in the Democratic presidential contest, where the bench is so barren that a flawed Hillary Clinton is barreling to an uncontested nomination.
But less attention has been paid to how the shrinking number of Democratic officeholders in the House and in statewide offices is affecting the party's Senate races. It's awfully unusual to see how dependent Democrats are in relying on former losing candidates as their standard-bearers in 2016.

Slogan: Make America Baltimore! O'Malley announces he will seek Democratic nomination for 2016 White House
Excerpt: Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley on Saturday announced we will seek the Democratic nomination for president in 2016, posing a long-shot challenge to Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton and vowing to ensure the presidency won’t be a crown “passed back and forth between royal families.” Declaring his plan to “Rebuild the American Dream,” O’Malley told a crowd of several hundred in Baltimore, where was once the mayor, “My decision has been made … I declare that I am a candidate for president of the United States.”

Don’t Believe Voter Fraud Happens? Here’s Some Examples. By Hans von Spakovsky
Excerpt: In the interest of helping out the editorial writers and pundits of media outlets who don’t think voter fraud occurs, I wanted to note just a few recent cases (and readers interested in seeing almost 200 more such cases can do so here.):

Of all Gods creatures there is only one that cannot be made the slave of the lash. That one is the cat. If man could be crossed with the cat it would improve man, but it would deteriorate the cat. --Mark Twain

Worth Reading: A summer break from campus muzzling. By George F. Will
Excerpt: Commencement season brings a respite from the sinister childishnessrampant on campuses. Attacks on freedom of speech come from the professoriate, that herd of independent minds, and from the ever-thickening layer of university administrators who keep busy constricting freedom in order to fine-tune campus atmospherics. The attacks are childish because they infantilize students who flinch from the intellectual free-for-all of adult society. When Brown University’s tranquillity of conformity was threatened by a female speaker skeptical about the “rape culture” on campuses, students planned a “safe space” for those who would be traumatized by exposure to skepticism. Judith Shulevitz, writing in the New York Times, reported that the space had “cookies, coloring books, bubbles, Play-Doh, calming music, pillows, blankets and a video of frolicking puppies.” (Our universities have become daycare centers for large toddlers who must be protected from life. ~Bob)

20 Questions You’re Not Supposed To Ask In America Today. By John Hawkins 
Excerpt: 4) If Barack Obama can directly contradict the laws on the books by refusing to deport millions of illegal aliens because of “prosecutorial discretion,” couldn’t a Republican President use the same precedent and refuse to prosecute people who don’t pay a capital gains tax or who violate EPA rules? ... 6) If Nazis (National Socialist German Workers' Party) were supposed to be Right Wing, then why did they proclaim themselves to be enemies of capitalism, implement socialist policies and call themselves socialists? 7) Why should we take the threat of climate change seriously enough to cut back our lifestyles when even Al Gore, the foremost promoter of global warming hysteria, lives in a mansion, flies on private jets and rides around in SUVs?

Worth Reading: How Dishonest is Barack Obama? By John C. Goodman
Excerpt: A week ago Friday was an unusual day for the editorial page of The New York Times. An unsigned editorial in the paper lashed out at the president for his public statements about reengaging in Iraq. A Paul Krugman column attacked the administration’s defense of the new trade agreement. Both pieces said the administration was being … (how shall we say it?) … dishonest. Granted, this was nothing like the language Krugman and the Times typically use to describe Republicans.

Rapist Forces Her Into Bedroom, Rips Her Clothes, Then Flees in Terror After What Happened Next
Excerpt: He began to remove his own pants in preparation for violently raping her, when the woman’s screams alerted her already agitated dogs. Ultimately, one of the dogs ran into the rescue, jumped between the two of them and began biting at Young. As the dog attacked him, Young quickly retreated, grabbing his pants and fleeing the scene. (Damn. now the Democrats will demand "Dog Control." ~Bob)

Phoenix VA Whistleblower Calls For Resignation Of Officials Amid ER Staffing Crisis
Excerpt: .... One employee, who was the only volunteer to fill all the gaps, accumulated 110 overtime hours over the course of a single pay period. ... Other whistleblowers, like Lisa Tadano, have had their medical records viewed by staff who not only had no business looking at her records, but were not even connected to her treatment at the facility. Penny Miller, the same individual who opened Tadano’s records, also accessed the records of noted whistleblower Brandon Coleman. (There is a federal law, HIPAA, which supposedly makes staff viewing medical records "who had no business looking" at the records illegal and violators subject to fines and termination. Also, amount of OT would render employee ineffective, subject to errors in judgment and illness/immunocompromise. Would have to be superhuman to continue to function well under such stress/conditions. --Barb)

Senators want Pentagon answers on 'troubling' anthrax shipments
Excerpt: "This incident has endangered lives, and the investigation and decontamination efforts will likely stretch on for months," he said, and pledged to hold any responsible parties accountable "for this threat to the public." Carper called it "critical" to understand how the incident occurred and to take steps to prevent it happening again. "We know all too well that the potential impact of biological threats on our communities can be severe – or even deadly," he said. (Article notes labs turned over samples to other labs, multiplying the areas involved.....TX was one of the states receiving samples. Australia received its "gift" in 2008, not currently. --Barb)

Top Pentagon official orders probe into anthrax mishap
Excerpt: The Pentagon’s second-in-command, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work, has ordered an investigation into the mishandling of the live anthrax samples sent to facilities in 11 states and abroad, a senior US defense official told Fox News Friday.... The department said 24 laboratories in 11 states and two foreign countries -- South Korea and Australia -- are believed to have received suspect anthrax samples. The broadening scope of the problem suggests more extensive flaws in procedures used by the Army's Dugway Proving Ground in Utah to ensure that anthrax samples were made fully inert before shipping them to labs. (Australia added to the list; however, another article notes occurred in 2008. Items sent via FedEx in 2015. --Barb)

Bernie Sanders: Women Fantasize About “Being Raped by 3 Men Simultaneously.” By Philip Hodges
Excerpt: Bernie Sanders wrote once that women fantasize about being gang-raped.
It doesn’t matter how long ago it was said, if it had been said by a Republican, that Republican would never even be able to hold office in the first place. If he had been able to hide it and get elected, he’d be forced to resign once his old statements had been uncovered. All Todd Akin had to do was utter the words “legitimate rape” before he had to kiss his political career goodbye. When it’s a Democrat, no one really cares. I mean, it was so long ago, so it doesn’t matter.

Thugs Tried To Ruin A Marine’s Funeral, Watch These Bikers Set Em’ Straight
Excerpt: With all the negative media surrounding biker groups, this story was a breath of fresh air. When protestors did the incomprehensible and attempted to ruin a fallen Marine’s funeral, the Patriot Guard stepped in and shielded the grieving family from the unimaginable chaos. This is amazing! The members of Westboro Baptist Church disagree with our country’s lack of morale. (sic) But they’ve misguidedly decided to show their hatred by protesting the funerals of America’s fallen men and women of service. (The Westboro maniac degenerates keep trying to disrupt funerals of our military, and thank heaven the Patriot Guard and others are there to form a wall of caring between them and the families. As a Christian I try to not have really nasty feelings towards others, but I would cheerfully go to jail for a year if I could drive a sewage truck past one of their demonstrations and hit them all with a high pressure hose of human waste. Just a thought....Del)

Rising Dragon News

Important: US and Australia dangerously deluded about future. Wealth equals power. So, think about where that leaves us as China soars ahead. By Hugh White, Sydney Morning Herald
Excerpt: Some time last year, China overtook the US to become the largest economy in the world, which is startling enough. But the most startling thing is what will happen over the next few years. Recently, PricewaterhouseCoopers released The World in 2050 - its latest estimate of the shifting global distribution of economic power. PwC predicts that by 2030 – only 15 years from now – China's gross domestic product will be $36 trillion, and the US GDP will be $25 trillion. In other words, China's economy has not just overtaken the US economy, but will soon leave it far behind. Mr Obama still reassures Americans that their country has never been stronger relative to others than it is today. This is simply and starkly untrue. 

India won’t provide solutions to our China questions. Prime Minister Modi wants India to become a regional leader in its own right. By Hugh White, Sydney Morning Herald
Excerpt: This hope has been reflected in Canberra's eager embrace of the concept of the "Indo-Pacific region". This is based on the idea that a rising India is already inextricably linked to the strategic tussles between China and the US, Japan and others in the western Pacific, and that its strategic role in them will inevitably grow as its own wealth and power grows. After a year, it is timely to ask how well Modi has met these high expectations. 

Gun News

Women Are A Driving Force In Nation’s Shift From Gun Control To Gun Rights. By Awr Hawkins
Excerpt: Women have emerged as one of the fastest-growing demographics of new gun buyers and concealed carry permit holders in the country, and in the process, they have become a driving force in the shift in American attitudes from pro-gun control to pro-gun rights.

Texas lawmakers clear bill allowing open carry of handguns
Excerpt: Texas lawmakers on Friday approved carrying handguns openly on the streets of the nation's second most-populous state, sending the bill to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, who is expected to sign it and reverse a ban dating to the post-Civil War era. Gun owners would still have to get a license to carry a handgun in a visible holster. The state known for its wild west, cowboy history and some the nation's most relaxed gun laws, has allowed concealed handguns for 20 years.

No Charges For Shooter In Double Homicide
Excerpt: District Attorney John Champion said he's not releasing the victims' names but family and friends identified them as Wayland Bownes and Recco Leland. They were shot at a Shiloh Road home in Courtland, Mississippi, during a cookout. Champion told FOX13 the shootout stemmed from a fight over the weekend involving a boy who lives at the Shiloh home and a group of other guys. The two victims showed up at the home Wednesday night, pulled out a gun and the boy who lives at the home shot and killed them

Race Card News

Excerpt: A tourist from New York was taking a casual stroll on the Miami Beach when an armed Daniel Palmer stopped him at gunpoint, ripped a gold chain off the victim’s neck and ran away only to return a couple of minutes later in a white Mercedes-Benz to tell him his jewellery was fake.

The Weiner Excuse: Baltimore Prosecutor Hiding Behind Pathetic Excuse After Caught Supporting Anti-Cop Propaganda
Excerpt: Mosby was caught “favoriting” two disgusting anti-cop posts on Twitter, one of which labeled the Baltimore police officers as “six thug cops,” and another, just hours after the first, that cast the case in a racial light. It was expected that her office would run damage control and blame outside forces, but the excuse they released was nothing less than pathetic — claiming Mosby’s Twitter account was “hacked.”

 "You're Greener than Gore" News

Despite Thunderous Opposition, EPA INCREASES The Ethanol Mandate
Excerpt: Despite complaints from the oil industry, livestock producers, environmental groups and a whole host of others, the Environmental Protection Agency has increased the amount of biofuels refiners are required to blend into the fuel supply every year....Even environmental activists oppose increasing the federal biofuel mandate, as do anti-hunger groups. Eco-groups argue biofuels, especially corn ethanol, are harming the environment, while hunger groups say the mandate raises food prices.

Religion of Peace News

Obama’s strategy for the Middle East has backfired. By Marco Rubio
Excerpt: The Middle East is more dangerous and unstable than when Obama came into office — a time when Iraq and Syria were more stable, the Iranian nuclear program was considerably less advanced and the Islamic State did not yet exist. Much of this instability is a result of Obama’s disengagement from the region, best symbolized by the withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq in 2011. The vacuum created by America’s pullback has been filled by bad actors, including terrorist extremists, both Sunni and Shiite, who have flourished in the absence of U.S. leadership.

An ethnic war in Iran is only a matter of time. Imagine the Islamic Republic falling apart like Syria, Iraq, Libya or Yemen in a civil war with armed militias – and nuclear facilities all over the area. By Guy Bechor, YNET
[Ed. Note: Caution. I think the ethnic numbers are very wrong. At least they don’t come close to agreeing with Wikepedia.]
Excerpt: On Independence Day, I received a message on Facebook from a man who lives in Iraq and wanted to congratulate the State of Israel on its independence and thank it for destroying Saddam Hussein’s nuclear reactor in 1981. If it were not for that, he wrote, Iraq would have been filled with nuclear facilities, and imagine what would happen now, with the all-out war taking place there, where there are no rules and no limits and everything is permitted. Israel saved the Iraqi people, he wrote and thanked us. Indeed, Saddam Hussein’s Osirak reactor, had it remained, would now be in the area occupied by the Islamic State in the al-Anbar province. What would the world do then?

“The President is Plunging the World into a Very Dark Place”
Excerpt: On Tuesday night Fox News host Bill O’Reilly went to a very controversial place when he argued that “the President is plunging the world into a very dark place.” O’Reilly focused on the growth of terrorism throughout the Middle East and the rest of the world – wondering how the Obama administration could possibly argue that we were winning the war on terror when the fight had spread to so many new locations.

This Way Comes. By Erick Erickson 
Excerpt: Dickerson, now like George Stephanopoulos, plays an objective Sunday news program questioner, and he, along with the circle of jerks who pose as objective reporters of the Obama administration, would rather blame Bush for ISIS, and not Barack Obama. But objectively, in 2009, as Bush left the White House, the surge had worked, Iraq was stabilizing, Iran was on the sidelines, and ISIS did not exist. When Obama entered the White House, he had made a campaign promise to get out of Iraq. On July 14, 2008, then candidate Obama wrote in The New York Times, "We can safely redeploy our combat brigades at a pace that would remove them in 16 months. That would be the summer of 2010 -- two years from now, and more than seven years after the war began." PolitiFact, which once attacked those who said Obama was lying with his claim that you could keep your doctor only to later declare that claim a lie, has never wavered from declaring that Obama has stuck to his Iraq withdrawal plan.

Saudi Arabia is no friend to the United States. By Colbert King
Excerpt: Now, shale production has propelled the United States way up the ladder as an oil producer, making us far less dependent on the kingdom than we were when we got blindsided in ’73. And the response from our “best friend”? The Saudis have been pumping up oil production to cause prices to fall, preserve their market share and thus undermine U.S. shale oil development. What a friend we have in Saudi Arabia. (King, I think, is a leftie. Doesn't mention Obama's bowing to them, or their funding of mosques that preach Jihad. ~Bob)

Hizballah Deepens Its Involvement in Syria. By Jonathan Spyer
Excerpt: The latest reports from the Qalamoun mountain range in western Syria suggest that Hizballah is pushing back the jihadis of Jabhat al-Nusra and Islamic State. The movement claims to have taken 300 square kilometers from the Sunni rebels. The broader picture for the Shia Islamists that dominate Lebanon, however, is less rosy. The Iran-led alliance of which Hizballah is a part is better organized and more effectively commanded than its Sunni rivals. Its ability to marshal its resources in a centralized and effective way is what has enabled it to preserve the Assad regime in Syria until now.

Verdicts often set before trials take place in Iran’s revolutionary courts. By Carol Morello 
Excerpt: Iran’s revolutionary courts, where Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian is being tried on espionage and related charges, are notorious among human rights activists as venues where verdicts are preordained and proceedings can finish in minutes. “Nobody thinks the result is ever in question,” said Rod Sanjabi, executive director of the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center, a New Haven, Conn.-based group that the Iranian government has labeled as subversive.

Canary Mission Website Gives Hard Left a Taste of Its Own Medicine. By Raheem Kassam
Excerpt: There's a website called "Canary Mission." I don't know who's behind it. Nor, it seems, does anyone else. But I think it's a great exercise in turning the tables on anti-Israel activists who have been 'shaming' people online for years. Canary Mission says its aim is to "expose individuals and groups that are anti-Freedom, anti-American and anti-Semitic in order to protect the public and our democratic values." It seeks to do this by maintaining an online database, complete with pictures, biographies, Facebook posts, videos, and quotes from anti-Israel activists who are seemingly apoplectic that their public behaviour has become, well, even more public than it was before.

Dog and Imam Duet
This dog lives next door to a mosque. He is trying out for imam. But first he has to get that Muezzin in tune. --Chet. Obama called the call to prayer "one of the most beautiful sounds in the world." The Dog is better. ~Bob)

The Real war on Women: Q&A: Probing Islamic State’s sex atrocities with the United Nations
Excerpt: After attacking a village, IS splits women from men and executes boys and men aged 14 and over. The women and mothers are separated; girls are stripped naked, tested for virginity and examined for breast size and prettiness. The youngest, and those considered the prettiest virgins fetch higher prices and are sent to Raqqa, the IS stronghold. There is a hierarchy: sheikhs get first choice, then emirs, then fighters. They often take three or four girls each and keep them for a month or so, until they grow tired of a girl, when she goes back to market. At slave auctions, buyers haggle fiercely, driving down prices by disparaging girls as flat-chested or unattractive. We heard about one girl who was traded 22 times, and another, who had escaped, told us that the sheikh who had captured her wrote his name on the back of her hand to show that she was his ‘property’. 

Cyber-Attack Warning: Could Hackers Bring Down a Plane?
Excerpt: Engineers from airlines and airplane manufacturers were also following the Spaniard's presentation via video. After he had finished, he recalls, they all wanted to know the same thing: "You aren't really planning on making all of that public, are you?"... "In modern airplanes, there are a whole series of backdoors, through which hackers can gain access to a variety of aircraft systems." (Planes, trains, smart automobiles....your frig, security system, TV....Barb)

For seeking answers on Islam, Muslim gets charged with blasphemy. By Zurairi Ar
Excerpt: “I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah,” is the shahadah, a declaration of faith for Muslims considered as one of the key pillars of Islam. But how did this practice come about? This was among the questions on the mind of Wan Sulaiman Wan Ismail, 53, when he sought clarification in 2013 from religious teachers. Wan Sulaiman wanted to know why are there differences between some of the rituals Muslims currently practice — like the shahadah — and what was mentioned in the Quran.

Minnesota Muslims brutally honest: 'We want Shariah'
Excerpt: Dozens of young Muslims have left the streets of Cedar Riverside, referred to by some Minnesotans as “Little Mogadishu” for its high concentration of Somali refugees, to travel abroad and fight for terrorist groups. Some have joined Somalia’s notorious al-Shabab, which slaughtered 147 Christians at a university in Kenya last month, while others have opted for ISIS in Syria. Their goal is the same – to join their brothers in the fight to establish a Shariah-compliant utopia known as a caliphate.

Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

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