ARMISTICE DAY / VETERANS' DAY
The 11th of November in 1918 was when the First World War officially came to an end. And that day has been formally marked every year since in remembrance of those who died. When I was growing up it was known as Armistice Day in Australia and I still think of it as that. It is however now formally Remembrance Day. It is Veterans Day in the USA. It is perhaps a little more significant this year as the 90th anniversary of the event. Britain certainly seems to have been engaging in more than the usual amount of commemoration in the last few days.
It is indeed a fitting occasion to remember. All wars are bad but that one probably reached a highpoint in ghastliness. And the amount of the slaughter was phenomenal. Few British and Australians emerged from it without the loss of at least one family member. One of my uncles twice removed died in it.
The suffering endured by the troops at the front was so awful that the war became known as "the war to end all wars". No reasonable person wanted another war. Even Theodore Roosevelt lost his enthusiasm for war when one of his sons died in it. And no politician thereafter could come to power unless he was seen as anti-war. The history books have washed memory of it away but even Hitler came to power as an advocate of peace.
I am putting up below a picture of a Nazi propaganda poster of the 1930s that you won't believe unless you are aware of how readily all Leftists preach one thing and do another. It reads Mit Hitler gegen den Ruestungswahnsinn der Welt. And what does that mean? It means "With Hitler against the armaments madness of the world".
And how about the second poster below? It would be from the March 5, 1933 election when Hitler had become Chancellor but Marshall Hindenburg was still President. Translated, the poster reads: "The Marshall and the corporal fight alongside us for peace and equal rights" (Der Marschall und der Grefreite kaempfen mit uns fuer Frieden und Gleichberechtigung)
Convinced yet? If not, maybe the next one below will convince. It is a poster for one of Hitler's famous Nuremberg rallies. It reads: Reichsparteitag des Friedens, 1939. That translates as "National party rally for peace, 1939".
And the fourth poster reads: Mit Adolf Hitler "Ja" fuer Gleichberechtigung und Frieden -- which translates as "With Adolf Hitler "Yes" for equal rights and peace" -- the same old standby slogans that the Left trot out to this day, of course.
So if there is any lesson to be learnt from the ghastliness of the 20th century, it surely is that loud "antiwar" cries from the Left are fraudulent. Such cries are just bait for the gullible and a mask for their real love of destruction.
Sadly, there will never be an end to the desire of some people to prey on others so there will never be an end to war. And any pretence otherwise is at best ignorant.
The Polls Show That Reaganism Is Not Dead
Barack Obama won the White House by campaigning against an unpopular incumbent in a time of economic anxiety and lingering foreign policy concerns. He offered voters an upbeat message, praised the nation as a land of opportunity, promised tax cuts to just about everyone, and overcame doubts about his experience with a strong performance in the presidential debates. Does this sound familiar? It should. Mr. Obama followed the approach that worked for Ronald Reagan. His victory confirmed that voters still embrace the guiding beliefs of the Reagan era.
During Reagan's campaign, the nation suffered from high unemployment and high inflation. This time around, data from the Rasmussen Reports Daily Presidential Tracking Poll showed that Mr. Obama took command of the race during the 10 days following the collapse of Lehman Brothers -- when the Wall Street meltdown hit Main Street. Before that event John McCain was leading nationally by three percentage points. Ten days later Mr. Obama was up by five and never relinquished his lead.
Mr. Obama's tax-cutting message played a key role in this period of economic anxiety. Tax cuts are well-received at such times: 55% of voters believe they are good for the economy. Only 19% disagree and see them as bad policy. Down the campaign homestretch, Mr. Obama's tax-cutting promise became his clearest policy position. Eventually he stole the tax issue from the Republicans. Heading into the election, 31% of voters thought that a President Obama would cut their taxes. Only 11% expected a tax cut from a McCain administration.
The last Democratic candidate to win the tax issue was also the last Democratic president -- Bill Clinton. In fact, the candidate who most credibly promises the lowest level of taxes has won every presidential election in at least the last 40 years. But while Mr. Obama was promising to cut taxes, the Bush administration took the lead on a $700 billion, taxpayer-backed bailout bill -- with very little marketing finesse. Few Americans supported the bailout, and a majority of voters were more concerned that the government would do too much rather than too little. In terms of getting the economy going again, 58% said that more tax cuts would better stimulate the economy than new government spending.
A Rasmussen survey conducted Oct. 2 found that 59% agreed with the sentiment expressed by Reagan in his first inaugural address: "Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem." Just 28% disagreed with this sentiment. That survey also found that 44% of Obama voters agreed with Reagan's assessment (40% did not). And McCain voters overwhelmingly supported the Gipper.
The real challenge for the new president will be attempting to govern with a message that resonates with most voters but divides his own party. Consider that 43% of voters view it as a positive to describe a candidate as being like Reagan, while just 26% consider it a negative. Being compared to Reagan rates higher among voters than being called "conservative," "moderate," "liberal" or "progressive." Except among Democrats, that is. Fifty-one percent of Democrats view that Reagan comparison as a negative. There's Mr. Obama's dilemma in a nutshell.
Mr. Obama won the White House promising tax cuts, but he will be governing with a Democratic Congress bursting with desire for a more activist government. As he faces this challenge, he might remember the fate of another man who made taxes the central part of his campaign: the first President Bush, whose most memorable campaign line -- "Read my lips, no new taxes" -- was as central to his victory as Mr. Obama's promise to cut taxes for 95% of Americans. George H.W. Bush famously reneged on that promise. Voters rejected his bid for a second term. Mr. Obama ran like Reagan. Will he be able to govern that way, too?
Big British welfare shakeup: "People living in council houses will no longer be entitled to a subsidised tenancy for life under Whitehall proposals to address waiting lists. New tenants would have fixed-term contracts under the plans, with regular reviews every few years, The Times has learnt. If a tenant's financial position improved he or she would be encouraged to take an equity share or to move to the private sector. If they refused they could face higher rents. The right to a council home is also likely to be tied to a requirement to have or be actively looking for a job. The measures are being considered by Margaret Beckett, the new Housing Minister, in the most radical shake-up of the social housing system for decades to ensure that those who deserve council homes get them."
The death of the American idea: "I disagree with my fellow conservatives who think the Obama-Pelosi-Reid-Frank liberal behemoth will so obviously screw up that they'll be routed in two or four years' time. The President-elect's so-called "tax cut" will absolve 48 per cent of Americans from paying any federal income tax at all, while those that are left will pay more. Just under half the population will be, as Daniel Henninger pointed out in the Wall Street Journal, on the dole. By 2012, it will be more than half, and this will be an electorate where the majority of the electorate will be able to vote itself more lollipops from the minority of their compatriots still dumb enough to prioritize self-reliance, dynamism, and innovation over the sedating cocoon of the nanny state. That is the death of the American idea - which, after all, began as an economic argument: "No taxation without representation" is a great rallying cry. "No representation without taxation" has less mass appeal. For how do you tell an electorate living high off the entitlement hog that it's unsustainable and you've got to give some of it back?"
Homosexuals reject democracy: "Protests continued Friday in several California cities, including San Francisco, Palm Springs and Long Beach, over the passage of Proposition 8, which outlaws same-sex marriage. The ballot initiative, which passed 52.5 percent to 47.5 percent Tuesday, overturns a May ruling by the California Supreme Court that struck down a 2000 ban on same-sex unions. In San Francisco, an estimated 2,000 protesters marched down Market Street toward Dolores Park. The march stretched out for at least three city blocks, and the protesters completely blocked Market Street's westbound lanes and the eastbound lanes in places."
Iraqi: We need U.S. troops: "A top Iraqi official warned Saturday that time is running out to sign a new security agreement with Washington, saying the country still needed U.S. troops despite improved security. Also Saturday, a suicide bomber killed eight people and wounded 17 west of Baghdad -- another sign that militants have still not given up the fight despite setbacks at the hands of U.S. and Iraqi forces. ''I hope that we can settle this matter as soon as possible because time is running out,'' Deputy Prime Minister Barham Saleh said of the long-delayed security pact. ''The security improvement that has been achieved is very important. The support of U.S. forces in the coming period will still be very important.''
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The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialist) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party" (In German: Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei)