Saturday, October 24, 2015

Today's worth-reading political news and opinion

Sunday is St. Crispin's Day. The 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt

Henry V Speech - Eve of Saint Crispin's Day
Thousands of arrows to rain down on Agincourt for the first time in 600 years as English and French historians plan to recreate famous battle

Interesting: Iowa Poll: Carson surges to 9-point lead; Trump slides
Excerpt: Donald Trump is the biggest loser in the new Iowa Poll. The pious Ben Carson has plowed past the braggadocious New York businessman to take the front-runner crown, unseating Trump as the most popular choice for president among likely GOP caucusgoers, the new Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics poll shows. Carson, a retired neurosurgeon, is the favorite choice for 28 percent — 9 percentage points ahead of Trump's 19 percent. (While I disagree with Dr. Carson on several issues and think he is naive about the power of reason to bring the parties together, I think he is an honest and honorable man, smarter than almost every other candidates, and would vote for him over Trump. ~Bob


Worth Reading: Foreign Policy and the Constitution. By Senator Tom Cotton

Obama vetoes $612 billion defense policy bill in rebuke to GOP
Excerpt:  Obama also rejects the bill as written due to provisions making it harder for him to transfer suspected terror detainees out of the military prison in Guantanamo BayCuba, a key campaign promise that Obama is hard-pressed to fulfill before his term ends. The White House has also expressed concerns over provisions preventing military base closures and funding equipment beyond what the military says it needs.

One US soldier killed in Iraq during rescue of more than 70 ISIS hostages
Fox News confirms that a US service member was killed in a special ops rescue of dozens of Iraqi Arabs held captive by Islamic State militants. 

Masked man who killed 2 in sword attack at Swedish school has died
When swords are outlawed....~Bob

Suspect dead, 10 hurt in hammer attack in Canadian office
Assault hammers. ~Bob

Worth reading: BENGHAZI - AN UNFINISHED JIGSAW PUZZLE. By Col. Andy Weddington, USMC (Ret)

Interesting: Warm in Public, Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton Have Been Intense Rivals in Private
Excerpt: Meetings with his foreign policy aides veered into lengthy discussions about Mrs. Clinton’s hawkish stance. At dinners with donors, Mr. Biden expressed astonishment at her handling of the controversy over her private email server. Those close to him say the mere mention of her name could make him fume, and he viewed her family’s potent, sometimes punishing political machinery with growing resentment. The decades-long relationship between Mr. Biden and Mrs. Clinton has included many public expressions of warmth, but in private, it has been marked by an intense rivalry as they both imagined ascending to the highest office in the land.

Bingo--proof she lied: Hillary Clinton's Long-Awaited Benghazi Hearing Marked by Testy Exchanges
Excerpt: Some of the strongest testimony so far, most likely to be seized upon by critics of Clinton, was the exchange with Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio. Jordan pointed to two emails -- the first was a note providing a readout of a call between Clinton and the Egyptian prime minister sent on Sept. 12, 2012, the day after the Benghazi attack. The email quotes Clinton as having said, “We know the attack in Libya had nothing to do with the film. It was a planned attack -- not a protest.” ... The second email is from Clinton to Diane Reynolds, an alias used by Chelsea Clinton, on Sept. 11, the day of the attack, in which she wrote, “Two of our officers were killed in Benghazi by an al Qaeda-like group: The Ambassador, whom I handpicked and a young communications officer on temporary duty w a wife and two young children. Very hard day and I fear more of the same tomorrow.”

Excerpt: Clinton also parroted the YouTube statement in the days after the attacks, even telling family members of the victims that the pastor who made the video would be brought to justice. But on Thursday, Ohio representative Jim Jordan revealed that State Department experts knew the administration’s line on Benghazi was bogus — and that it was driven entirely by politics. ... And in a call with Egyptian prime minister Hisham Kandil, Clinton deliberately rejected the video idea. “We know the attack had nothing to do with the film,” she says. “It was a planned attack, not a protest . . . Based on the information we saw today, we believe that the group that claimed responsibility for this was affiliated with al-Qaeda.” (It was not until September 21 that Hillary Clinton used the words “terrorist attack” to refer to Benghazi. So for the first ten days after the attack, we have a series of private comments from Hillary Clinton sounding quite emphatic that this was a terror attack, and then a series of public comments that blame it on an angry mob reacting to a video. --Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt.)

Interesting: Benghazi bust. By Bryon York
Excerpt: The documents were still more evidence that the blame-it-on-the-video story was lies and spin. But the public has known for a while that it was lies and spin. It seems unlikely to strike many Americans as very big news. So a hearing billed as an epic, High Noon-style confrontation — granted, the hype came from the media, not Republican committee members themselves — instead turned out to be a somewhat interesting look at a few limited aspects of the Benghazi affair. In other words, no big deal. And that is very, very good news for Hillary Clinton.

6 Key Exchanges From Hillary Clinton’s Benghazi Testimony. By Melissa Quinn
Hillary has testified, and we know very little new and she has escaped any real blame.  So much for that. I have always said the way to look at Benghazi is really simple.  Here are the questions to be asked.1- What was the most dangerous ambassadorial post in the world at that time? 2- Of the posts in the Middle East, which had the least security team? 3- What ambassador had asked repeatedly for increased security, but had all requests denied? The answers are: Benghazi, Benghazi, and Ambassador Stevens. The next question is, given this demonstration of utter and total incompetence in protecting an embassy and its ambassador, who is ultimately responsible?  That answer is the Secretary of State. If one really wants to add in a couple more questions, one would be: 4- When those in charge were aware very early that it was a planned terrorist attack, why were the American people told for some weeks that it was a spontaneous response to a provocative video that had been on the Internet for some time already? 5- While those in the War Room were watching the attack in real time, why was not every remotely possible source of help, from Italy or a carrier or anywhere else, not scrambled instantly and sent on their way, since there was no telling when the attack would end so there was always a chance some help might get there in time to save some Americans? But no one in the media or this Administration or on the Left side of the aisle wants to deal with any of these questions.  They just want Benghazi to go away, and they've done their level best to accomplish that consistently.  There will be no justice for the four dead Americans, and that is an awful thing. --Del

Clinton on the Attack in Benghazi, September 12, 2012
Excerpt: Some have sought to justify this vicious behavior as a response to inflammatory material posted on the Internet.

Benghazi: My questions for Hillary Clinton

Benghazi: The fundamental question that still hasn't been answered
As obvious as the question, "Who is going to pay for all this?" that wasn't asked at the Dem debate....Barb

Interesting: Bombshells Drop as Hillary Clinton Testifies at Benghazi Hearing
Excerpt: ...Jordan then offers the only plausible reason for the State Department to have lied about Benghazi in the days following the attack… POLITICS. Anyone still defending Clinton or the Obama administration over the Benghazi debacle is obviously a partisan hack with no interest in being intellectually honest... (My take has always been that they feared a rescue attempt would likely result in a lot of Muslim casualties, many of them local civilians caught in the crossfire, which would give the Jihadists ammo to ferment riots throughout the Muslim lands, which would threaten Obama's reelection campaign. The risk was thus less to the campaign to just let Stevens and the other three Americans die. ~Bob)

Excerpt: Surely, if they say it enough, they’ll hope it becomes its own truth. And it very well might; many honest political analysts have evaluated Clinton’s performance as they would a Broadway play. Her posture, her composure amid withering and extended questioning, and her general command of the issues was indeed impressive. The notion, however, that nothing had been revealed that was previously unknown by the Benghazi committee is nothing short of a lie. What we discovered is this: The White House and Clinton apparently knew that the Benghazi attack was the premeditated work of Islamic terrorists before the bodies were cold. She and the administration nevertheless proceeded to propagate a falsehood that advanced the president’s preferred political narrative just six weeks before a tightly-contested national election. (Remember, in the aftermath of the Benghazi attack, the Obama White House used the video lie to launch a national conversation on the limits of free speech. Obama even went to the U.N. and, before the whole world, put our free-speech rights in the dock. Blaming America, specifically our attachment to the First Amendment, is a much easier conversation for this White House -- and the praetorian pundits who cover for it -- than the White House’s unpreparedness and ineptitude in the face of Islamic terrorism. --Jonah Goldberg)


Documents reveal that Hillary knew all along that Benghazi jihad attack had nothing to do with Muhammad video

WOUNDED COMBAT VET: 12 Unanswered Benghazi Questions Hillary’s AVOIDING
Excerpt: Four Americans are dead, the Obama administration and  former Secretary of State have engaged in a cover-up greater than Watergate, and the ‘most transparent administration ever’ has been about as clear mud regarding what actually took place. Now, over three years later, there are still at least a dozen major questions left completely unanswered:

Surprise! Justice Department: No criminal charges for Lerner, others in IRS scandal
If they charged her, she might sing about Obama! ~Bob

Excerpt: rime is back up in California. Los Angeles reported a 20.6 percent increase in violent crimes over the first half of 2015 and nearly an 11 percent increase in property crimes. Last year, cash-strapped California taxpayers voted for Proposition 47, which so far has let thousands of convicted criminals go free from prison and back onto the streets. Now the state may have to relearn what lawbreakers often do when let out of jail early. The state may be entering the fifth year of a catastrophic drought, but California has not started building any of the new reservoirs that were planned but long ago canceled under the unfinished California Water Project. ... California endures some of the highest gasoline taxes, sales taxes, and income taxes in the nation. Yet its roads and public schools rate near the very bottom of U.S. rankings. (Hanson is not letting up on the mess in CA, but that's because he lives there, runs a farm himself, and is intimately familiar with all the downsides of the past 30 years of mismanagement. As I commented on his last column about the state, the question is, how long can this go on?  Because the answer for sure is "Not Forever". --Del)

With a Wave of New Laws, California May Be the Most Progressive (Read Socialist) State in the Nation. By Stephen Frank 
Actually, I am not sure how far things will go in CA, given the steady flight of industry and people when they retire, the tax base seems to get narrower and the tax load on those good citizens who own property and work getting ever higher.  Three cities are in bankruptcy now, plenty of others have enormous pension system liabilities too that aren't getting any better at all.  Logic tells me this cannot go on forever, but it's already gone on longer than I would have thought likely. So when will the problem with too much spending for too little results and too much support for those who aren't contributing hit some kind of wall?  Damifino.  Two years, five years, ten years?  We can only watch in wonder, and listen for the first sound of some part of the system collapsing.  And hope our friends who live there either get out in time or have plenty of ammo, canned goods, and their own well. --Del

Interesting: Russia retreats to autarky as poverty looms By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
Excerpt: Russia is running out of money. President Vladimir Putin is taking a strategic gamble, depleting the Kremlin's last reserve funds to cover the budget and to pay for an escalating war in Syria at the same time. The three big rating agencies have all issued alerts over recent days, warning that the country's public finances are deteriorating fast and furiously. There is no prospect of an oil revival as long as Saudi Arabia continues to flood the market. Russia cannot borrow abroad at a viable cost.

Islamic State attacks dramatically increase after over a year of US airstrikes. By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: Nothing to be concerned about. Obama says that we’re on the way to degrading and destroying the Islamic State, and he wouldn’t lie to us, now, would he?

Retired US Navy captain: The centerpiece of the Navy's future doubles down on a 20-year-old strategic mistake

‘Palestinian’ Government Minister attacked by Muslim rock throwers mistaken for a Jew

Important: The false promise of ‘judicial restraint’ in America. By George F. Will
Excerpt: A supremely important presidential issue is being generally neglected because Democrats have nothing interesting to say about it and Republicans differ among themselves about it. Four Supreme Court justices are into the fourth quarters of their potential centuries — Stephen G. Breyer (77), Antonin Scalia (79), Anthony M. Kennedy (79) and Ruth Bader Ginsburg (82). So, presidential candidates should explain the criteria by which they would select judicial nominees. Regarding jurisprudence, Democrats are merely results-oriented, interested in guaranteeing three outcomes: expanding government’s power to prevent protection of unborn babies, expanding government’s power to regulate speech about the government (“campaign finance reform”) and expanding government’s power to discriminate for the benefit of certain government-preferred groups (“race-based remedies”).

Almost 100 Homeland Security employees have been paid to stay home for over a year

WaPo Fact Checker: Bernie Sanders’s inaccurate claim that the two Koch brothers will spend more than either major party on 2016 elections
Excerpt: An anti-Koch message is a powerful one, and an energizing one for Sanders’s base. But this particular anti-Koch message reaches too far and thus earns Four Pinocchios.

US 'clock boy' Ahmed Mohamed to move to Qatar
The super rich Arabs of Qatar have decided to invite him and his family to come there to live and go to school, all expenses paid, of course.  This is a better deal than his father could get from various social benefits here, so they are pulling up stakes and departing US shores. To the guys in Qatar I can only say, thank you, thank you, thank you.  We needed this family here like a drowning man needs more water.  But I am sure that there will be some kind of whining on the Left about how this terrible society has driven out this wonderful group of immigrants. --Del

California Muslim wanted to blow up daycare center because it was “Zionist”

Muslim from UK murders and wounds 80 in jihad suicide attack for Islamic State. By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: “A propaganda video of his final moments were released online last week, with the jihadi describing his decision through the use of a Qur’anic quote.” One might almost get the idea that this kind of thing had something to do with Islam. Good thing we have Obama and Kerry and David Cameron and everyone else to assure us that it isn’t so.

NEW JERSEY School bans Halloween because it is offensive to Muslims

THE HILDEBEEST: Can’t Hide Her Contempt At Start of Benghazi Hearing
EXCERPT: Hillary Clinton opened Thursday’s hearing before a House committee by casually flipping through her notes and shaking her head as the panel’s top Republican read out the names of four Americans who died in the 2012 terror attack on a State Department outpost in Benghazi, Libya.

IRONY ALERT: Bernie Sanders is One Cheap Tipper!
Excerpt: Bernie Sanders. He’s this week’s champion of the middle class who says he’s going to take money away from other people and give it to those he’s arbitrarily decided do not have enough. He also wrote weird stuff about rape fantasies. Yeah, that guy.

Necrophilia is OK in Islam (have sex with your dead wife)

KA-BOOOOOOOOM! By Col. Andy Weddington, USMC (Ret)

Jim Webb on Foreign Policy
If the Obama Administration hadn't thrown Libya into chaos during Arab Spring, there would have been no ‪#‎Benghazi. --Jim Webb

Nigeria Boko Haram: 18 killed in suicide bomb blasts at Maiduguri mosque during morning prayer

They could send it to the Democrats to use in their Jefferson-Jackson Day dinners. ~Bob


Democrat Politics--punish your opponents: State Water Board Drought Restrictions Show Political Bias Favoring Governor Brown’s Party  By Brian Hews
Excerpt: A Hews Media Group-Community News investigation has found that the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), an unelected body made up of members appointed by Governor Brown and by Senate Pro Tem Kevin DeLeon, and stacked heavily with environmentalists and labor leaders, has deliberately assigned higher levels of water conservation to water agencies located in districts with seats held by State Senate and Assembly Republican office holders as opposed to agencies in the districts of Democratic office holders. Further, the investigation reveals that, as the penalties for non-compliance have increased from 1,786 in May to 29,500 in July, a jump of 21,798, 75%, were issued in Republican Senate and Assembly districts. (How interesting this is.  Somehow the farmers and others using water who live in GOP districts get hit with higher standards and more fines in the latest California drought restrictions scheme.  If the areas were made up of more Black farmers instead of more GOP voters, the DOJ would be all over this and the screaming would have wound up in the Oval Office. But this is.... different, of course.  Just politics in CA with Jerry Brown in charge. --Del)

The Taliban’s Tet Offensive and the Attack on Kunduz. We cannot let Afghanistan suffer the same fate as Vietnam. By James Stavridis. James Stavridis is a retired four-star U.S. Navy admiral and NATO supreme allied commander who serves today as the dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.
The Admiral brings up a very good point about learning from history.  Unfortunately, to really "win" in Afghanistan is simply not possible without a really major effort to crush the forces in-country while covering the border with Pakistan so heavily with air and drone surveillance that it becomes suicide for more Taliban to come in.  And under this Administration, neither of those will happen.  To go back to the example of Viet Nam, the most critical think we could have done was really close the Ho Chi Minh Trail.  We never did, and that was perhaps the single biggest strategic failure of all. --Del

‘We didn’t mean any harm’: Band members facing suspension for ‘racist’ gift basket
Excerpt: "It is a tradition for student representatives of competing schools to exchange gifts on the field at varsity football games. On Friday, students from one school presented students from the other school with a watermelon, a pineapple, a coconut, and watermelon gum. Today, school administrators conducted an investigation and after considering the totality of the circumstances, determined that the gift was inappropriate and lacked good sportsmanship. Atascocita High School will not tolerate racial insensitivity." Atascocita band members say they never dreamed the gift would be considered racist and that they didn't mean any harm.

Will your relationship last? Credit scores may hold the answer
Excerpt: Your credit score tends to indicate whether you will be a great partner and how long your relationship might last, according to a study done by the Federal Reserve Board in August. After following 12 million U.S. consumers for 15 years, the study found that people with higher credit scores are more likely to commit to their relationships and stay committed.

The Bizarre Sign Your Relationship Won't Last
Excerpt: “People with higher credit scores tend to be more responsible to begin with,” says Arlene Goldman, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist and sex therapist with a private practice in Philadelphia and coauthor of The Secrets of Sexual Ecstasy. “When deciding to marry or divorce someone, they may be more thoughtful and think about long-term effects.” On the other hand, people with lower credit scores tend to be more impulsive, says Goldman. ... And if you both have low scores, you’re two to three times more likely to break up than couples who both have great ones, say the researchers.

A Tribute to Vietnam Veterans Featuring the Voice of Mr. Sam Elliott
This is something from the government sponsored group to celebrate the efforts and sacrifices of those who served during the war.  They have done a really nice job of it. --Del

Poll: NRA more popular than Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton
Excerpt: A new poll shows The National Rifle Association is more popular than the Democratic party's two most prominent members, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. According to the Gallup Poll, 58 percent of Americans surveyed said they have a favorable view of the gun rights group, while 35 percent said they have an unfavorable view.

Are you a democratic socialist like Bernie Sanders? Take the quiz.
I'm not. I had economics in high school, my only "A" course and in my government courses at UMass, and have read a lot of books by various economists. I know how that story ends--in government coercion and fiscal collapse. ~Bob


Amazing Grace--great version

Racists: School Takes 3rd Graders on Field Trip, Leaves All the White Kids Behind
Because only #BlackLivesMatter. ~Bob

The Marine Corps Marathon Route Looks Exactly Like A Certain Piece Of Male Anatomy
More like a machine gun to me. ~Bob

Fail:  Obama's Defense of Black Lives Matter Contradicts BLM Co-Founder's Own Words
Excerpt: Obama’s whitewash of Black Lives Matter appears to be especially dishonest since one of the group’s other co-founders, Patrisse Cullors, has claimed to have met with the President—something that Breitbart News has reported, which seems to be confirmed by White House visitor records.  In this video, Cullors—wearing a Palestinian Kaffiyeh scarf—told a British interviewer, “We’re going into halls of power now. ... Some of us have met with President Obama himself to talk about the demands [emphasis added].” (And Marvel's new superhero pic will be called "Black Panther." --Barb)

Treason: GAO Says Five Enemy Combatants Obama Swapped for Bergdahl Was Illegal Deal. BY PAMELA GELLER 
Excerpt: Western intelligence services are exploring the possibility that ex-Gitmo detainees (the supposedly “lower threat” ones, released prior to the ‘Taliban Five’) may hold leadership positions within the death cult that’s marauding through vast swaths of Iraqi and Syrian territory.  A former Guantanamo inmate was also implicated in the deadly 9/11/12 attack on the US compound in Benghazi, too.  It’s almost as if a lot of these guys really were bloodthirsty Islamist radicals, not innocent victims of US overreach, after all.  That’s why Congress has repeatedly refused to provide the funds to close the Gitmo detainment center, and why they passed a law that requires the White House to provide ample warning prior to releasing any further inmates. (Prior articles indicate GAO determined Gitmo 5 "were no longer dangerous to US."  So WHO are these nameless suits at GAO appointed by Obama that make these decisions? --Barb)

"Europe, The Dying Continent" 

BRUTAL: The HARD TRUTH About European Style Socialism

The American 'Recovery' In 1 Chart

Christmas Gun Sweater from Red Dot Sight

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