Saturday, November 14, 2009



Jihad's 5th Column

The Fort Hood terrorist is being portrayed as an "anomaly," an "aberration," a "lone wolf." Sadly, he's just one of many examples of jihadist traitors in the ranks of the military. Together they form a dangerous Fifth Column, and the Pentagon — thanks to institutionalized political correctness — is doing next to nothing to root them out .

Instead, brass are actively recruiting Muslim soldiers — whose ranks have swelled to more than 15,000 — and catering to their faith by erecting mosques even at Marine headquarters in Quantico, Va. More, they're hiring Muslim chaplains endorsed by radical Islamic front groups, who convert and radicalize soldiers.

In the wake of the worst domestic military-base massacre in U.S. history, this is an outrage to say the least. And the PC blinders explain how Fort Hood commanders could have failed so horrifically in protecting their force from the internal threat there.

The terrorist suspect, an Islamic fanatic, penetrated deep into the Army's officer corps before gunning down, execution-style, more than 40 of his fellow soldiers. Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan allegedly killed 13 at the Texas post, which boasts some 40 Muslims.

Witnesses say he shouted "Allahu Akbar" — Allah is great! — before opening fire in a crowded building where troops were sitting ducks, waiting to deploy to Iraq and Afghanistan, both wars that Hasan angrily opposed. "Muslims should stand up and fight the aggressor," he reportedly said earlier this year, referring to the U.S. — the country he swore to protect.

During the invasion of Iraq in March 2003, another devout Muslim in the Army had a similar conflict. Sgt. Hasan Akbar also resorted to violence, fragging 17 fellow soldiers, killing two. Why? He opposed the killing of fellow Muslims. "You guys are coming into our countries, and you're going to rape our women and kill our children," he was overheard by soldiers who survived the grenade attack as saying.

Clearly, his loyalties lay elsewhere. And he's hardly alone:

• Navy Signalman Hassan Abujihaad last year was convicted of tipping off al-Qaida to battle group movements in the Persian Gulf, including disclosing classified documents detailing the group's vulnerability to terror attack.

• Army reservist Jeffrey Battle in 2003 pleaded guilty to conspiring to wage war against the U.S., confessing he enlisted "to receive military training to use against America."

• Army reservist Semi Osman in 2002 was arrested for providing material support to al-Qaida and pleaded guilty to weapons charges after agreeing to testify against other terror suspects.

SOURCE

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Interesting repentance from some "Hillary Democrats"

We know absolutely no one in Bush family circles and have never met former President George W. Bush or his wife Laura. If you have been reading us for any length of time, you know that we used to make fun of “Dubya” nearly every day…parroting the same comedic bits we heard in our Democrat circles, where Bush is still, to this day, lampooned as a chimp, a bumbling idiot, and a poor, clumsy public speaker.

Oh, how we RAILED against Bush in 2000…and how we RAILED against the surge in support Bush received post-9/11 when he went to Ground Zero and stood there with his bullhorn in the ruins on that hideous day. We were convinced that ANYONE who was president would have done what Bush did, and would have set that right tone of leadership in the wake of that disaster. President Gore, President Perot, President Nader, you name it. ANYONE, we assumed, would have filled that role perfectly.

Well, we told you before how much the current president, Dr. Utopia, made us realize just how wrong we were about Bush. We shudder to think what Dr. Utopia would have done post-9/11. He would have not gone there with a bullhorn and struck that right tone. More likely than not, he would have been his usual fey, apologetic self and waxed professorially about how evil America is and how justified Muslims are for attacking us, with a sidebar on how good the attacks were because they would humble us.

Honestly, we don’t think President Gore would have been much better that day. The world needed George W. Bush, his bullhorn, and his indominable spirit that day…and we will forever be grateful to this man for that.

As we will always be grateful for what George and Laura Bush did this week, with no media attention, when they very quietly went to Ft. Hood and met personally with the families of the victims of this terrorist attack.

FOR HOURS.

The Bushes went and met privately with these families for HOURS, hugging them, holding them, comforting them.

If there are any of you out there with any connection at all to the Bushes, we implore you to give them our thanks…you tell them that a bunch of gay Hillary guys in Boystown, Chicago were wrong about the Bushes… and are deeply, deeply sorry for any jokes we told about them in the past, any bad thoughts we had about these good, good people.

You may be as surprised by this as we are ourselves, but from this day forward George W. and Laura Bush are now on the same list for us as the Clintons, Geraldine Ferraro, Stephanie Tubbs Jones, and the other political figures we keep in our hearts and never allow anyone to badmouth.

Criticize their policies academically and intelligently and discuss the Bush presidency in historical and political terms… but you mess with the Bushes personally and, from this day forward, you’ll answer to us.

We hope someday to be able to thank George W. and Laura in person for all they’ve done, and continue to do. They didn’t have to head to Ft. Hood. That was not their responsibility. The Obamas should have done that. But didn’t. Wouldn’t.

Thank goodness George W. is still on his watch, with wonderful Laura at his side. We are blessed as a nation to have these two out there…just as we are blessed to have the Clintons on the job, traveling the world doing the good they do.

And we are blessed to have Dick Cheney, wherever he is, keeping tabs on all that’s going on and speaking out when the current administration does anything too reckless and dangerous. Cheney’s someone else we villainized and maligned in the past who we were also wrong about. There has never been a Vice President, including Gore, Biden, or Mondale, who was more supportive of gay rights than “Darth Cheney”. There has never been a Vice President more spot-on right about the dangers facing this country from Islamic terrorism.

We live in strange, strange times indeed. We are now officially committed fans of George W. and Laura Bush. We are fans of Dick Cheney. Our gratitude for them makes us newly protective of them, and the continued role they play in this country.

After the primary battle of 2008, we never thought we’d go back to Texas for anything, but sometime in 2010 we want to find some event in Dallas the Bushes will be at so at least one of us can go up to them, tell them we are deeply sorry for ever thinking ill of them, and thank them from the bottom of our hearts for their service to America.

We’re sure they will just stare at us and wonder why these gay Chicagoans are crying, but we don’t think we can get through a meeting with them without being emotional. What they did at Ft. Hood for those families humbles us. Every day, the Bushes are most likely doing something just like it behind the scenes. We hope if any of you encounter them you will let them know this is deeply appreciated beyond partisan lines.

We will never look at the Bushes, the Bush presidencies, or their legacies the same again… and someday when his presidential library is built, we will be so proud to visit there and tell anyone will listen about November 10th, 2009, the day we finally appreciated former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura.

Thank you for your service, Mr. President. We’re sorry we didn’t appreciate you while you were in office, but we thank Heaven we’ve wised up and can see the good you are out there doing, under the radar, today.

SOURCE

The writers above were greatly moved by the human feelings that GWB and Laura showed at Ft. Hood but people who followed GWB carefully throughout his Presidency will be aware that he is a man of deep and kind-hearted feelings who did similar things often -- though always privately. My own perception was always that GWB is simply a Christian gentleman -- which shows what hate-addled crazies the Bush=Hitler crowd are

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On vacation with Mr. Dithers

Every modern president takes refuge abroad when the going gets rough at home. (Before the jet airplane life was simpler and presidents could get respite with a train trip to Cleveland or Buffalo.) So President Obama is off to Asia, where never will necessarily be heard an encouraging word, but he won't have to listen to criticism in the Queen's English. His approval ratings are continuing to sink -- down now to 46 percent, measured by reliable Rasmussen Reports. Nancy Pelosi's euphoria over her razor-thin passage of the fanciful House version of Obamacare is fading in the wake of rising Senate opposition to the thousand pages of Mzz Pelosi's poisoned mush. The president continues to dither over what, if anything, to do about the war in Afghanistan, which he once called "the necessary war." Soon he won't be "Mr. President" so much as "Mr. Dithers." (Blondie and Dagwood would recognize him at once.)

The president's dithering on what to do in Afghanistan leads only to more opportunities to dither. He now has a controversy in his own house, with his ambassador in Afghanistan scoffing that sending more troops to Kabul will only prop up a corrupt nothingburger government. His commander in Kabul, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, wants thousands more troops for a surge similar to the surge that won the war in Iraq. This is the kind of controversy no president needs, particularly when he's off to impress the world with what a great leader he is. He wouldn't have to suffer such indignities if he could make up his mind. Mr. Dithers has Dagwood Bumstead to blame for his stumbles, but a president doesn't have the luxury of a Dagwood.

Mr. Obama could have arrived in Beijing riding authentic momentum if he had only taken his teleprompter to Berlin for the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. He was invited by Angela Merkel, the chancellor of the reunited Germany, to join her and Mikhail Gorbachev, whose reforms hastened the collapse of the old Soviet Union. But Mr. Obama, who found a way to work in a quick trip to Copenhagen to lobby (unsuccessfully) for a Chicago Olympics, was too busy. He sent a videotaped speech in which he studiously avoided mentioning Ronald Reagan, whose flinty resolve to win the Cold War eventually erased that hideous scar of steel and concrete across the Berlin landscape. It's impossible to imagine Barack Obama, as eloquent as he can be, as John F. Kennedy ("ich bin ein Berliner") or Ronald Reagan ("Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall").

More here

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ELSEWHERE

Did Obama snub eastern European victims?: "The collapse of the Soviet Union apparently has not been all that welcome by Mr. Obama’s political base, the extreme Left Wing of American liberals. These folks have always had a soft spot in their hearts and minds for experiments in collectivism. Any anti-individualist polity is for these folks a progressive undertaking since by their lights humanity makes progress when it moves toward lumping all of us into a huge mass to be guided by the likes of Stalin, Hugo Chavez, or Fidel Castro, all of whom want to impose on it a one-size-fits-all way of life. So it is very likely that skipping the celebration of the fall of the Berlin Wall was a calculated decision.”

Black Supremacist Murders White Cop: No mention of "hate crime": "While a massive memorial service for slain Officer Timothy Brenton neared its finish at KeyArena on Friday afternoon, fellow officers with the Seattle Police Department shot a man they believe to be responsible for Brenton’s death. The shooting occurred in Tukwila around 3 p.m., shortly before the memorial service concluded. Sources say the man is Christopher John Monfort. Law-enforcement sources said Monfort also is suspected of the Oct. 22 bombing and arson of a Seattle maintenance yard, where three police cars and an RV used as a mobile precinct were damaged. Before Monfort was identified, police found distinct evidence that leads them to believe the same person was involved in that crime and the Brenton shooting, sources said. A note threatening to kill police officers was left at the bombing site... Monfort provided this title for his project with the McNair program: “The Power of Citizenship Your Government Doesn’t Want You to Know About: How to Change the Inequity of the Criminal Justice System Immediately, Through Active Citizen Nullification of Laws, As a Juror.” In an abstract of his project, Monfort said he planned to “illuminate and further” the scholarship of Paul Butler, a law professor at George Washington University. Butler is a proponent of jury nullification. Butler has argued that such nullification may be particularly appropriate in cases where black defendants are charged with nonviolent crimes. “It is the moral responsibility of black jurors to emancipate some guilty black outlaws,” Butler wrote."

Obama Administration Intends to Purge Republicans From the Civil Service: "Remember how the Democrats reacted when the Bush Administration started replacing U.S. Attorneys? At least they were actually political appointees employed at the will and whim of the President.... It is a typical Washington process that many political appointees are able to take jobs within the civil service once their political appointment expires — usually at the conclusion of one administration. What often happens as well is Congressional staffers, before an election or shortly thereafter, will move over to the Executive Branch placed into the civil service, in effect, by appointment. So, for example, when George Bush became President in 2001, a number of Clinton political appointees became civil service employees. As a result, they became subject to civil service hiring and firing rules, which meant they could no longer be replaced simply for having been a Democratic appointee. Barack Obama is changing that. He intends to purge all Republicans from the federal bureaucracy retroactive to five years ago. Under his new rules, made retroactive for five years, the Office of Personnel Management will examine civil service employees who got their start as political appointees in the Bush administration and terminate those employees."

Pro-abortion Episcopalians: "Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood clinic director whose about-face on abortion prompted her to resign her job, says she's gotten flack for her decision from an unexpected quarter: her own church. Her Oct. 6 decision to leave Planned Parenthood in Bryan, Texas - after viewing an ultrasound-guided abortion of a 13-week-old fetus two weeks earlier - made headlines, especially when she ended up volunteering at the Coalition for Life center a few doors away. Her former employer filed a restraining order to silence Mrs. Johnson, but a judge threw out the case on Tuesday. Now she is facing a different kind of music at her parish, St. Francis Episcopal in nearby College Station, the home of Texas A&M University. Whereas clergy and parishioners welcomed her as a Planned Parenthood employee, now they are buttonholing her after Sunday services. "Now that I have taken this stand, some of the people there are not accepting of that," she told The Washington Times. "People have told me they disagree with my choice. One of the things I've been told is that as Episcopalians, we embrace our differences and disagreements. While I agree with that, I am not sure I can go to a place where I don't feel I am welcome." [More evidence that Episcopalians are Christian in name only: "Thou shalt not kill"?]

Bush warns of too much government: "Former President George W. Bush said Thursday that America must resist the "temptation" to allow the government to take over the private sector, taking a subtle shot at his Democratic successor by warning that too much state intervention and protectionism will squelch the economic recovery. As the Obama administration has made far-reaching moves into the auto, real estate, health care and financial sectors to fight the economic recession, Mr. Bush, without mentioning the president by name, said, "The role of government is not to create wealth but to create the conditions that allow entrepreneurs and innovators to thrive. "As the world recovers, we will face a temptation to replace the risk-and-reward model of the private sector with the blunt instruments of government spending and control. History shows that the greater threat to prosperity is not too little government involvement, but too much," said Mr. Bush, who has remained out of the limelight since leaving office and rarely criticizes his successor."

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

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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)

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Friday, November 13, 2009



IS IDENTIFICATION IMPORTANT?



Consider these photos of two different snakes, which share a common territory and habitat. They look similar, but are 2 species-is it important to identify which is which? Well, one of them is utterly harmless, even beneficial as a predator of rodents. The other one is very dangerous, with an exceedingly deadly venom.

Is it important to identify which is which? If we are going to kill any snake we come upon, identification is not important. But if we hope to live and let live, we had better be able to identify them accurately.

In the wake of the Fort Hood jihadi massacre. our military and security authorities would do well to at least TRY to identify hostile or unreliable individuals amongst their personnel. This is obviously made more difficult considering the position of our elected Traitor-in-Chief, but these people have human lives in their hands, and need to think about protecting loyal Americans from jihadi "colleagues." And damn the careerist consequences.

A good place to start is just one little question: How many uauthorized e-mails is acceptable for a US Army major to exchange with an al-Qaeda-affiliated imam in Yemen?

SOURCE

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Paralysed by political correctness

From a press release from NPR:
NPR NEWS REPORTS: WALTER REED AND USUHS OFFICIALS DISCUSSED WHETHER NIDAL HASAN WAS “PSYCHOTIC” DURING SERIES OF MEETINGS BEGINNING IN 2008

NPR News has learned that key officials from Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) held a series of meetings and conversations between spring 2008 and spring 2009 to discuss Nidal Hasan, and at one point questioned whether he was psychotic and mentally fit to be an Army psychiatrist. NPR correspondent Daniel Zwerdling has spoken with several officials and military psychiatrists from both institutions who are familiar with the meetings; one official who worked closely with the committee tells Zwerdling: “Put it this way. Everybody felt that if you were deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, you would not want Nidal Hasan in your fox hole.”

Excerpts of Zwerdling’s report are below; the complete story is available now at NPR.org [Here] Zwerdling will also have a report this evening on All Things Considered.
Zwerdling reports that a group of key officials from Walter Reed and USUHS met in spring 2008, as they do every month, to discuss issues surrounding the psychiatrists and other mental health professionals training at the institutions. One of the most perplexing items on their agenda: What should we do about Nidal Hasan? Participants in that meeting and subsequent conversations about Hasan reportedly included John Bradley, Chief of Psychiatry at Walter Reed; Robert Ursano, chairman of the psychiatry department at USUHS; Charles Engel, assistant chair of the psychiatry department and director of Hasan’s psychiatry fellowship; Dr. David Benedek, another assistant chair of psychiatry UHUHS; and Scott Moran, director of the psychiatric residency program at Walter Reed, according to colleagues and other sources who monitor the meetings.

Update: From a reader:
This quote from the NPR report sickened me: “Put it this way. Everybody felt that if you were deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, you would not want Nidal Hasan in your fox hole.” Isn't that pretty much the numero-uno criterion for being a soldier?

These doctors didn't want to serve alongside Hasan. But when they had the opportunity to stop him from serving with others, they chickened out. They should be dishonorably discharged and given the opposite of a Congressional Medal of Honor, whatever that is. I'll tell you what the real psychosis is: political correctness.

SOURCE

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Military brass wallow in 'diversity' fetish that caused Fort Hood tragedy and betrayed our troops

As we and the Manchester Union-Leader noted earlier, the Fort Hood shooter, Nidal Hasan, escaped any preventive action because of a politically-correct obsession with "diversity," which made officers reluctant to report Hasan's extremist remarks in favor of terrorism and against non-Muslims, lest they be accused of discrimination or insensitivity.

Some military leaders, catering to liberal Congressional leaders and the Obama Administration, continue to cling tightly to the "diversity" dogma, demanding that those in the military keep silent rather than saying things that might call into question their "diversity" obsession: "Naval Academy senior commanders decided during the World Series to remove two Midshipmen from the color guard that appeared. What was their offense? The color guard was deemed too white and too male. There was accordingly a push to make the color guard more 'diverse.' Two members of the color guard were removed and replaced by a Pakistani and a woman to achieve the requisite 'diversity.' The Pakistani unfortunately forgot his cap and shoes. He himself had to be replaced at the last minute by one of the two middies removed earlier. The midshipmen have reportedly been ordered not to speak of these events."

Our government's obsession with "diversity" also created the climate in which officers were afraid to report the suspicious behavior of the Fort Hood shooter, Nidal M. Hasan. Although his anti-American, pro-terrorist views were common knowledge, "a fear of appearing discriminatory . . . kept officers from filing a formal written complaint," reports the Associated Press. As a result, he escaped any disciplinary action or review of his fitness.

The Fort Hood shooter had previously said that Muslims should rise up against the military, "repeatedly expressed sympathy for suicide bombers," was pleased by the terrorist murder of an army recruiter, and publicly called for the beheading or burning of non-Muslims, talking "about how if you’re a nonbeliever the Koran says you should have your head cut off, you should have oil poured down your throat, you should be set on fire." But thanks to a politically-correct double standard, nothing was done to remove him from a position where he could harm others.

The lesson of the Fort Hood shootings is that applying politically-correct double standards, rather than treating people equally, can be lethal.

(Intelligence officials knew that Nidal Hasan, the soldier who killed 13 people at Fort Hood, was trying to contact Al Qaeda. He once attended the same mosque as 9/11 terrorists.)

In a desire to curry favor with the liberal Congress that funds it (and the Obama Administration), the military has increasingly adopted politically-correct policies that abandon equal treatment. One example is racial preferences in admissions to the military academies, imposed in the name of “diversity.” (In practice, “diversity” seems to mean crude “racial proportionality”: it is harder for Asians to be admitted to the academies than for whites and Hispanics, and harder for whites and Hispanics to be admitted than for African-Americans. Such preferences are of dubious legality under Supreme Court precedent.)

In this climate of political correctness and double standards, it is understandable that officers were afraid to file complaints about Hasan, for fear that they would incur the wrath of the “diversity” police.

Even now, the Army Chief of Staff, General George Casey, denies that the military failed to pick up the obvious warning signs about Hasan, and he is more concerned that the shootings will undermine the army’s commitment to “diversity,” than he is about the tragedy itself. He claims that a backlash against diversity would be an even "worse" tragedy than the one that took place at Fort Hood. He remains wedded to a policy of "zero tolerance" for criticism of "diversity," i.e., double standards. He seems more concerned that “diversity” will become a “casualty” of such shootings than that American soldiers will.

President Obama’s initial response to the tragedy last Thursday was embarrassing, even for some liberal journalists. Obama’s initial remarks about the tragedy came buried in the middle of a speech laced with “wildly disconnected” ramblings about an unrelated topic, starting with a “joking shout-out.” Even the liberal Boston Globe chided the president for a speech lacking in ”empathy” for the victims.

In an absurd display of political correctness, early media reports chose to harp on the false claim that the killer had PTSD (which he didn’t: he never even served overseas) or the unsupported claim that he had been subjected to harassment (support groups for Muslim soldiers say they have received no recent reports of harassment).

SOURCE

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THE DISASTER THAT WAS KELO V. NEW LONDON

By Neal Boortz

Thanks to a little Supreme Court decision we know as Kelo v. New London ... private property rights in America are basically nonexistent ... at least when it comes to government. Just like many freedoms and liberties we thought our government would never infringe upon, property rights got the proverbial guillotine chop in the Kelo decision. For those of you who are government educated, here's a quick reminder. Kelo v. New London essentially established that the government can seize private property and sell it to another private individual or corporation to develop. The reason? Increasing tax revenue. Simple as that.

Years later, the Kelo case is finally seeing some semblance of finality. The whole debacle started when Pfizer decided that it wanted to expand its facilities in New London. So the city of New London won the battle and was able to seize private homes and turn the property over to Pfizer. It was perhaps the worst Supreme Court decision we've ever seen. Years later, the condemned homes have been destroyed and the site is nothing but a bunch of weeds. That, it seems, is the way it will stay. Pfizer has decided that it is going to close up shop in New London and move elsewhere.

So there you go. The property that became the symbol of private property rights - the property that was seized by the government and turned over to a private entity for development - is now nothing but a pile of weeds with no plans for development

Don't you just love watching the power of government at work?

SOURCE

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ELSEWHERE

I am putting up today on EDUCATION WATCH an article that sets out how extensive was the support for Nazism on pre-war American university campuses. The "Anti-Zionism" that flourishes there today is part of an old-old story -- as is the support for socialism among ivory-tower intellectuals. Nazism was the exciting new form of socialism in the 30s and American universities lapped it up.

Fort Hood killer contacted Muslim extremists: "Fort Hood shooting suspect Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan had been in contact with numerous Muslim extremists -- some of whom are under federal investigation -- before last week's rampage, two U.S. officials told The Washington Times on Wednesday. Maj. Hasan made some of the contacts while visiting known jihadist chat rooms on the Internet, according to one of The Times' sources, a senior FBI official. He said that several people with whom Maj. Hasan was in contact had been the focus of investigations by the FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force. The other source, a military intelligence official, said those in contact with Maj. Hasan are located both in the U.S. and overseas. The official said they are "broadly known and characterized as Islamic extremists if not necessarily al Qaeda." Both officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case, said some of the names of those with whom Maj. Hasan was in contact will likely be released soon.

Will this brave black intellectual be charged with a hate crime?: "A prominent Columbia architecture professor punched a female university employee in the face at a Harlem bar during a heated argument about race relations, cops said yesterday. Police busted Lionel McIntyre, 59, for assault yesterday after his bruised victim, Camille Davis, filed charges. McIntyre and Davis, who works as a production manager in the school's theater department, are both regulars at Toast, a popular university bar on Broadway and 125th Street, sources said. The professor, who is black, had been engaged in a fiery discussion about "white privilege" with Davis, who is white, and another male regular, who is also white, Friday night at 10:30 when fists started flying, patrons said. McIntyre, who is known as "Mac" at the bar, shoved Davis, and when the other patron and a bar employee tried to break it up, the prof slugged Davis in the face, witnesses said. "The punch was so loud, the kitchen workers in the back heard it over all the noise," bar back Richie Velez, 28, told The Post. "I was on my way over when he punched Camille and she fell on top of me." McIntyre had squabbled with Davis several weeks earlier over issues involving race, witnesses said. As soon as the professor threw the punch Friday, server Rob Dalton and another employee tossed him out."

British defence bureaucrats pocket £300m as British soldiers die in Afghanistan for lack of equipment: "Ministry of Defence bureaucrats have pocketed nearly £300million in bonuses while soldiers have been dying from lack of equipment. The civil servants have seen 'good performance' payments - including rewards for saving money - double. The pen-pushers also won extra cash for hitting targets for promoting diversity and improving health and safety. In one shocking example, two mandarins collected bonuses of £17,000 each - more than a year's basic pay for a squaddie in Helmand. But on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, soldiers have accused the Government of putting lives at risk by scrimping on military essentials including helicopters, radios and night goggles. MPs, soldiers' families and campaign groups condemned the 'scandalous' waste of money. They said it could have been used to refit six Chinook troop carrying helicopters, desperately needed in Afghanistan, which have been confined to their hangers since 2001 after a massive MoD contract blunder."

Government health care: Back to the plantation: "Black leaders constantly remind Americans of our racism. Should not these same leaders protest the expansion of government control contained in the health-care reform bill currently working its way through Congress? Here’s why. Notwithstanding their rhetoric of freedom and empowerment, many prominent black leaders appear content to send blacks back to the government plantation—where a small number of Washington elites make decisions for blacks who aren’t in the room. Why do minority leaders not favor alternatives that demonstrate faith in the intelligence and dignity of people to manage their own lives?”

Military discipline slipping: "The armed forces guard individual rights, but they are governed by different rules from civilian organizations. In the 1986 Goldman v. Weinberger case, the Supreme Court upheld military regulations barring Jews from wearing yarmulkes while in uniform. Constitutional rights and freedoms guaranteed to civilians are subordinate to military necessity. Now the Army is inviting more petitions from individuals seeking specal accommodations on a "case-by-case basis". Having abandoned sound practice without justification, the Army will have no principle on which to stand. These accommodations will erode military culture, fueling doubts about the judgment of leadership and resentment of special treatment for religious minorities. This would be the case even if there were no reports of a Muslim extremist shouting ‘Allahu Akhbar!’ while murdering fellow soldiers at Fort Hood.”

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

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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)

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Thursday, November 12, 2009



Time to Jump to Some Conclusions

Thirteen brave soldiers are dead today because the United States Army decided to put the tender sensibilities of radical Muslims above the personal safety of the American people. An overstatement? Not hardly. And to make matters worse, it is now clear that under Commander in Chief Barack Hussein Obama, the Army intends to continue this lunacy -- no matter how many innocent lives are lost. And no matter how thoroughly it devastates our army's ability to combat terrorism both abroad, and at home.

Lest there be any doubt about the Obama policies, consider his admonition immediately following Nidal Malik Hasan's terrorist attack on U.S. soldiers at Fort Hood. No sooner had Hasan finished mowing down the unarmed "infidels" ... no sooner had the assassin's screams of "Allah Akbar" faded from his lips ... than Barack Obama warned the American people “don’t jump to conclusions.”

Now, lest anyone think that by this, Obama meant not to jump to the conclusion that Hasan was the shooter, such, unfortunately, is not the case. Said the President shortly after the massacre, "This past Thursday, on a clear Texas afternoon, an Army psychiatrist walked into the Soldier Readiness Processing Center, and began shooting his fellow soldiers."

No, what this President meant is clear to any who listened as he soft-peddled radical Islam throughout his presidential campaign. His words are clear to any who heard his speech to the Egyptian parliament apologizing for America’s intolerance. They are clear to all who know that his first call to a foreign leader was to Palestinian strongman Mahmoud Abbas They are clear to those who recall that his first formal interview was to Al Arabiya, when he condemned, not Islamic terrorism, but Israeli settlements. And they are abundantly clear to any who remember Obama’s own words from page 261 of his self-adulating autobiography Audacity of Hope. Apologizing for what he considers the horror Muslims have suffered at the hands of everyday Americans, he writes:
“They [the Muslims] have been reminded that the history of immigration in this country has a dark underbelly; they need specific assurances that their citizenship really means something, that America has learned the right lessons from the Japanese internments during World War II, and that I will stand with them should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.”

Little wonder, then that Obama has, at best, consented with his silence as his Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and his top military commanders clear Nidal Malik Hasan of any radical Islamic motives. And even less wonder that he has allowed his Army Chief of Staff, Gen. George Casey, to take such patent idiocy a far step further.

Indeed, asked by ABC’s George Stephanopolous if the Amy had “dropped the ball” by not recognizing any of a hundred and one different warning signs that Hasan had become a dangerous radical, Casey recited the Obama Administration’s official mantra. We shouldn’t “jump to conclusions,” he intoned, based on “early tidbits.”

And what were those “early tidbits?” In 2001, Hasan attended the notorious Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Falls Church, Virginia, where he listened in rapt attention as the fiery, anti-American imam Anwar Al-Awlaki encouraged his followers to attack the infidels. Not so coincidentally, among Hasan’s fellow attendees at the Center were two of the September 11 terrorists.

During his time at Walter Reed Hospital and the Uniformed Services University, Hasan, according to the New York Times, became increasingly hostile towards the War on Terror and Americans who defended it. Wrote the Times:
“A former classmate in the master's degree program said Major Hasan gave a PowerPoint presentation about a year ago in an environmental health seminar titled "Why the War on Terror Is a War on Islam." He did not socialize with his classmates, other than to argue in the hallways on why the wars were wrong … [S]ome students complained to their professors about Major Hasan.”

Even more recently, according to an ABC News Online article, intelligence sources had a level of knowledge that Hasan was in communication with al Qaeda assets abroad. And according to the highly reliable web site, the Northeast Intelligence Network, “this and information similar but not directly related to such communications became a ‘political issue’ between government agencies and officials ‘at the policy making levels’ of the administration.”

So, in view of all this – and the 13 martyred soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas -- are the Obama Administration and the U.S. Army, at last, ready to start heeding reports of radical activity among Muslim soldiers – before more shots are fired and additional lives are lost?

Not a chance. Here is the Obama Administration’s official response, as enunciated by Gen. Casey on NBC’s “Meet the Press” Sunday morning: “As horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that’s worse.” That, of course, is sheer idiocy. And it is time for Barack Hussein Obama to step to the fore and declare once and for all – honestly and openly – whether he still intends to “stand with” the radical Muslims even to the extent of protecting “diversity” over American lives. If not, we have every right to “jump” to our own conclusions.

SOURCE

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Obama's arrogance of power

Last year's financial meltdown rightfully destroyed former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan's reputation as an infallible "wise man," but he said something wise in his 2007 memoirs, describing a constitutional amendment he'd been "pushing for years." Wrote Greenspan: "Anyone willing to do what is required to become president of the United States is thereby barred from taking that office. I'm only half joking."

It's no laughing matter. After all, what sort of person wants the job badly enough to spend years living out of a suitcase, begging for cash, glad-handing through primary states, and saying things that no intelligent person could possibly believe? Greenspan's point was that people who seek the presidency today display a pathological power lust that ought to make us uncomfortable, given the powers the modern president enjoys.

George Washington was called "the American Cincinnatus," after the Roman hero who took power reluctantly and returned humbly to his plow when crisis passed. That's the model Americans once expected presidents to follow. Things have changed, and not for the better.

The last candidate to pay tribute to the Cincinnatus model was 1996 GOP contender Bob Dole, who praised the virtues of his birthplace, Russell, Kan., insisting it was either the White House or "home." It turned out that Dole left "home" deliberately vague. After losing, he returned to his condo at the Watergate, making bucks as a lobbyist and Viagra pitchman.

As for the current POTUS, "he's always wanted to be president," according to Obama's longtime friend and advisor Valerie Jarrett. No surprise, then, that, as Newsweekeditor Jon Meacham put it in a profile of Obama earlier this year, he "likes and enjoys power," even "revels" in it.

In a fascinating article, presidential scholar Richard Ellis writes that "in the beginning, the presidency was envisioned not as an office to be enjoyed but as a place of stern duty." "Powerful cultural norms" told 19th-century presidents to approach the role humbly, with a keen awareness that power corrupts. In public and in private, early presidents often acknowledged their deficiencies. "No event could have filled me with greater anxieties," Washington said of his election. Likewise, in his first inaugural, Jefferson worried that the task he'd undertaken was "above my talents."

Today, Ellis explains, the public demands greater confidence from presidential aspirants. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid tells us that when he congratulated Barack Obama for a "particularly fine" speech Obama made as a freshman senator, Obama "said quietly, 'I have a gift, Harry.'" Reid reports that Obama said that with "deep humility." We'll have to take his word for it.

Calvin Coolidge, a genuinely humble man and a fine president, wrote in his autobiography that it was "a major source of safety to the country" for the president "to know that he is not a great man." Few of our recent presidents display Coolidge's self-awareness.

Newsweek's Meacham reports that Barack Obama relishes "the capacity to shape reality in his image and by his lights." An interesting phrase, that -- reminiscent of the Bush aide who bragged to reporter Ron Suskind that "we're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality." And yet, as we learned during the Bush years, reality has a way of fighting back.

Obama's supporters have embraced the epithet Suskind's source coined. They fancy themselves members of the "reality-based community." Yet they doggedly defend a president for whom the word "hubris" might have been invented -- one who thinks that the government, under his direction, can rationally reshape the one-sixth of the U.S. economy devoted to health care.

Our president describes his budget as a "blueprint" for America's future, and believes that, with the proper mix of social workers and soldiers, we can bring orderly governance to Afghanistan, which has never enjoyed it. We'd do far better if our presidents had Coolidge's sense of his own limitations and of government's as well. It's easy enough to blame the overconfident, self-aggrandizing characters who seek the office. But at the end of the day, we're the ones who reward them. Unless and until we seek out candidates who share Coolidge's modesty, we'll have no one to blame but ourselves.

SOURCE

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Jobs, jobs, jobs

The news will always return to unemployment when other topics fade. "Any time you have unemployment this high, it is the number one story, whether it's being written about or not," says David Winston, a Republican pollster who for months has urged GOP officeholders to focus steadily on the issue. Double-digit unemployment is the default top story of the year; whatever else happens, the national conversation will come back to unemployment as long as the jobless rate remains unacceptably high.

You don't have to be a Republican strategist to agree. "Obama's focus on health care rather than jobs, when the economy is still so fragile ... could make it appear that the administration has its priorities confused," writes Robert Reich, former Clinton secretary of labor and a supporter of nationalized health care. "While affordable health care is critically important to Americans, making a living is more urgent."

Reich wrote those words nearly a week before we learned, last Friday, that unemployment had hit 10.2 percent. And on that Friday, the news about President Obama was that he had delayed, by a day, his pep talk to House Democrats preparing to pass the health care bill. Obama stayed in the news over the weekend with highly visible statements on health care.

What a difference from the first days of his administration when -- with unemployment at 7.6 percent -- the president seemed totally focused on jobs. "Experts agree that if nothing is done, the unemployment rate could reach double digits," Obama said in his weekly address on Jan. 24, urging Congress to quickly pass a proposed $1 trillion stimulus bill. The nightmare "double digit" scenario became Obama's mantra. "If we don't act immediately ... the national unemployment rate will approach double digits," he said in early February at a town hall in Florida. "Approach double digits," he repeated at a speech in Indiana. "Double digits," he wrote in an op-ed in The Washington Post.

The only way to prevent unemployment from approaching 10 percent, Obama said, was to pass the stimulus, which in the end cost $787 billion. With the stimulus, the administration claimed, unemployment would stay below 8 percent. Without it, joblessness could climb to 9 percent.

Now, with the stimulus passed and unemployment at 10.2 percent, the White House is not only distracted by health care but divided on its own record. On one hand, Obama and Vice President Biden say the stimulus is working, and will work more in the future. On the other, top economic adviser Christina Romer suggests the stimulus has run its course and unemployment will likely "remain at severely elevated levels" through 2010.

The stimulus is the one big issue that is entirely Obama's, and he's losing support on it. "He has not managed to accomplish the basic thing that the American people want, and that is to provide some sense that the economy is going in the right direction," says David Winston.

On Monday, Biden -- who famously admitted that the Obama economic team didn't really understand the depth of the economic crisis -- headed to Detroit to headline fundraisers for two Democratic congressman at the MGM Grand Casino Hotel. It cost $5,000 to get into the VIP reception. Biden was met by a Republican ad, "Get Back to Work." "We've lost 178,000 jobs [in Michigan] since Congress passed the massive spending bill President Obama promised would help with jobs," the ad says. "While he's here, will the vice president be working on ways to reduce an unemployment rate of 15.3 percent, the highest of any state in the country?" The question answered itself; there were fundraisers to attend.

In coming weeks, Obama will be involved in contentious Senate fighting over health care. He may travel to Copenhagen for international global-warming talks. And he'll be in Oslo to pick up his Nobel Peace Prize -- a few days after the next set of unemployment numbers are due. There will be a lot of news. But for millions of Americans, joblessness will remain the big story, no matter what the president does.

SOURCE

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ELSEWHERE

I have been doing some revisions to my home page lately -- mainly putting up more pictures. See here (Backup here).

Obama Fail is an interesting blog. From them I learned that Obama is seen as "weak" in China. The only people he threatens are Americans.

Airport rules changed after Ron Paul aide detained: "An angry aide to Rep. Ron Paul, an iPhone and $4,700 in cash have forced the Transportation Security Administration to quietly issue two new rules telling its airport screeners they can only conduct searches related to airplane safety. In response, the American Civil Liberties Union is dropping its lawsuit on behalf of Steve Bierfeldt, the man who was detained in March and who recorded the confrontation on his iPhone as TSA and local police officers spent half an hour demanding answers as to why he was carrying the money through Lambert-St. Louis International Airport. The new rules, issuedin September and October, tell officers "screening may not be conducted to detect evidence of crimes unrelated to transportation security" and that large amounts of cash don't qualify as suspicious for purposes of safety. "We had been hearing of so many reports of TSA screeners engaging in wide-ranging fishing expeditions for illegal activities," said Ben Wizner, a staff lawyer for the ACLU, pointing to reports of officers scanning pill-bottle labels to see whether the passenger was the person who obtained the prescription as one example. He said screeners get a narrow exception to the Fourth Amendment, which prohibits unreasonable searches, strictly to keep weapons and explosives off planes, not to help police enforce other laws."

UT: Salt Lake City passes gay rights laws with Mormon backing: "With a historic endorsement from the Mormon church, the Salt Lake City Council unanimously passed a pair of ordinances making it illegal to discriminate against gays in housing and employment. Tuesday’s action was the first time the Utah-based church — which has been steadfast in its opposition to gay marriage — has publicly supported gay rights legislation.” [A Mormon crackup?]

A nightmare for the American dream: "As Members of Congress consider whether to retain federal death taxes, they should ponder the principal reasons why they should join prior Congresses and repeal this tax, says William W. Beach, Director of the Center for Data Analysis at the Heritage Foundation. Death taxes discourage savings and investment: For those Americans who think that their estates may one day pay federal death taxes, the tax sends a signal that it is better to consume today than invest and make more money in the future. Instead of putting their money in the hands of entrepreneurs or investing more in their own economic endeavors, Americans are encouraged to consume it now rather than pay taxes on it later.”

Big business hearts regulation: "It’s commonly supposed that big business dislikes regulation. Intuitively, the idea seems plausible enough. There’s only one problem: it’s wrong. Almost exactly wrong. Big business can absorb pernicious regulation fairly easily: they have in-house legal departments, they have various economies of scale working in their favor, and the cost of compliance with regulation per unit of output is trivial when compared to what their smaller competitors suffer. Big businesses, all too often, love regulation. They especially love rules and restrictions that shaft their competition.”

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

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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)

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Wednesday, November 11, 2009



LOL! Leftist philosophers tie themselves into a knot

Philosophy is a rather vague term used to cover a lot of loose thinking. I belong to the tradition called Anglo-Saxon empiricism, though some of the most notable exponents of Anglo-Saxon empiricism were not Anglo-Saxon. Ludwig Wittgenstein, for instance, was an Austrian Jew. Anglo-Saxon empiricists restrict their task to something quite akin to science. They look for order and regularity in discourse and try to clear up what people are saying and implying when they say certain kinds of things. And that is, of course, no easy task.

Such thinking was once dominant in Anglo-Saxon philosophy schools but the great expansion of tertiary education in recent decades has meant that many less rigorous thinkers have been employed as philosophers, some even being third-rate enough to find enlightenment in the words of an obsolete economist called Karl Marx. So philosophy schools are now replete with people who seem to think they are being profound when they say: "There is no such thing as right and wrong" or "There are many realities". To an Anglo-Saxon empiricist, such statements are simply confused.

Such confused thinking is usually described (rather fancifully) these days as "postmodernism" but for historical purposes it is probably best subsumed under the broad category of "existentialism" -- and there were many prominent existentialist thinkers in the first half of the 20th century, particularly in Germany. And many existentialist thinkers at that time were sympathetic to National Socialism (Nazism), just as their counterparts today are solidly in favour of all sorts of Leftist thinking. So existentialist thinking and Leftism have always been intimately associated among many who call themselves philosophers. And it should therefore be no surprise that prewar existentialists sound very profound to existentialists today.

The Nazi connection is however embarrassing. Heidegger, Carl Schmitt, DeMan and others sound very good and wise and profound to Leftist philosophers today so how do you cope with the Nazi connection? Easy: In the traditional Leftist way of dealing with all inconvenient facts -- by ignoring it.

One of the holier of today's existentialists has however recently upset the applecart by pointing out that the great god Heidegger was a Nazi and calling for all Heidegger's thinking to be denounced and renounced. Leftists are not letting go of such an inspiring (to them) figure as Heidegger, however. What Heidegger says is central to what they say, so to denounce Heidegger would be to denounce most of their own thinking. And there the matter rests at the moment. A small excerpt from a NYT story about the matter below. That Nazi thinking is one subset of socialist thinking is, of course, never acknowledged:
For decades the German philosopher Martin Heidegger has been the subject of passionate debate. His critique of Western thought and technology has penetrated deeply into architecture, psychology and literary theory and inspired some of the most influential intellectual movements of the 20th century. Yet he was also a fervent Nazi.

Now a soon-to-be published book in English has revived the long-running debate about whether the man can be separated from his philosophy. Drawing on new evidence, the author, Emmanuel Faye, argues fascist and racist ideas are so woven into the fabric of Heidegger’s theories that they no longer deserve to be called philosophy. As a result Mr. Faye declares, Heidegger’s works and the many fields built on them need to be re-examined lest they spread sinister ideas as dangerous to modern thought as “the Nazi movement was to the physical existence of the exterminated peoples.”

First published in France in 2005, the book, “Heidegger: The Introduction of Nazism Into Philosophy,” calls on philosophy professors to treat Heidegger’s writings like hate speech. Libraries, too, should stop classifying Heidegger’s collected works (which have been sanitized and abridged by his family) as philosophy and instead include them under the history of Nazism. These measures would function as a warning label, like a skull-and-crossbones on a bottle of poison, to prevent the careless spread of his most odious ideas, which Mr. Faye lists as the exaltation of the state over the individual, the impossibility of morality, anti-humanism and racial purity.

The book is the most radical attack yet on Heidegger (1889-1976) and would upend the philosophical field’s treatment of his work in the United States, and even more so in France, where Heidegger has frequently been required reading for an advanced degree. Mr. Faye, an associate professor at the University of Paris, Nanterre, not only wants to drum Heidegger from the ranks of philosophers, he wants to challenge his colleagues to rethink the very purpose of philosophy and its relationship to ethics.

At the same time scholars in disciplines as far flung as poetry and psychoanalysis would be obliged to reconsider their use of Heidegger’s ideas. Although Mr. Faye talks about the close connection between Heidegger and current right-wing extremist politics, left-wing intellectuals have more frequently been inspired by his ideas. Existentialism and postmodernism as well as attendant attacks on colonialism, atomic weapons, ecological ruin and universal notions of morality are all based on his critique of the Western cultural tradition and reason.

I go into some detail about the confusions of "postmodernist" thinking here

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An inadvertent admission

In January of 2009, President Obama sent Valerie Jarrett to represent him at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Her speech was supposed to be on “The New US Agenda.” However, she spent half the speech talking about who Barack Obama is. (Side note: so half of the US agenda is the President himself?) And the one thing the audience understands clearly about Barack Obama after her speech can be summed up in one word: Chicago.

“I think knowing Chicago is essential to knowing America and our new President,” she told them. Chicago was the city where he got his start as a community organizer. And since, she claimed, all that most of the audience (at the World Economic Forum, no less) knew about Chicago was Oprah and Michael Jordan, she proceeded to tell them that it is the heartland of America, with a hardworking, pragmatic populace. She neglected to mention that it is also infamous for its widespread culture of political corruption.

She passed over the fact that in the past 30 years 79 local officials have been convicted of corruption. That would have sounded awkward given her claim that “Chicago was a natural for the president.”

The panegyric continued, “In so many ways, he embodies those timeless values that sum up the spirit of the city.” For example, the persistent tradition of machine and thug politics (mostly extinct elsewhere in the country) in the midst of which the President got his start in politics, evident in his electoral tactics: prior to the 2008 presidential election, the only election in which his opponents were not either thrown off the ballot because Obama’s campaign challenged their required signatures, or hit by scandals from sealed divorce records, was his 2000 primary challenge against Democrat Bobby Rush (which resulted in a resounding defeat for the President). Or perhaps his espousal of Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, a book the author dedicated to Lucifer, aka, Satan and the Devil.

Thank you, Mrs Jarrett. Your admission, ahem, insight has been illuminating.

SOURCE

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ELSEWHERE

The full speech recently given in NYC to the General Assembly of the United Jewish Communities by Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu can be found here. He covers a lot of ground and does it well.

Obama to send more troops to Afghanistan: "President Barack Obama is nearing a decision to add tens of thousands more forces to Afghanistan, though not quite the 40,000 sought by his top general there, as Pentagon planners work to make room for the influx. Administration officials told The Associated Press on Monday the deployment would most likely begin in January with a mission to stiffen the defense of 10 key cities and towns. An Army brigade that had been training for deployment to Iraq that month may be the vanguard. The brigade, based at Fort Drum in upstate New York, has been told it will not go to Iraq as planned but has been given no new mission yet."

Make banks small enough to fail: "An unusual alliance of conservatives and liberals is pushing to break up or downsize banks deemed "too big to fail," rather than create a new regulatory regime led by the Federal Reserve to try to keep them from getting into trouble again. Public anger toward bailouts and the central bank's role in rescuing big institutions like American International Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. are fueling growing opposition to the Fed-led oversight plan advocated by the Treasury Department and House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, Massachusetts Democrat. In Europe, regulators are moving to break up megabanks like ING Group, KBC and Lloyds that became government wards after last year's global financial meltdown. An increasing number of legislators, political activists and financial specialists in the U.S. want to move in the same direction for troubled institutions such as Citigroup and Bank of America."

Officials: US Army told of Hasan’s contacts with al Qaeda: "U.S. intelligence agencies were aware months ago that Army Major Nidal Malik Hasan was attempting to make contact with people associated with al Qaeda, two American officials briefed on classified material in the case told ABC News. According to the officials, the Army was informed of Hasan’s contact, but it is unclear what, if anything, the Army did in response. Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-MI), the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said that he requested the CIA and other intelligence agencies brief the committee on what was known, if anything, about Hasan by the U.S. intelligence community, only to be refused.”

Framed for child porn by a PC virus?: "Of all the sinister things that Internet viruses do, this might be the worst: They can make you an unsuspecting collector of child pornography. Heinous pictures and videos can be deposited on computers by viruses — the malicious programs better known for swiping your credit card numbers. In this twist, it’s your reputation that’s stolen. Pedophiles can exploit virus-infected PCs to remotely store and view their stash without fear they’ll get caught. Pranksters or someone trying to frame you can tap viruses to make it appear that you surf illegal Websites. Whatever the motivation, you get child porn on your computer — and might not realize it until police knock at your door.”

She’s back!: "Ayn Rand, the Russian-born novelist and philosopher, died in 1982. But in this Bush-Obama season of fantastical government growth and encroachment into all areas of human activity, Rand has become a Banquo’s ghost at the banquet of politics, an antistate spirit haunting politicians and commentators who thought her free-market worldview was safely buried by the fall 2008 financial collapse. Signs of the Rand revival abound. The surprisingly large anti-government Tea Party protests have been chock-a-block with signs such as ‘Atlas Is Shrugging’ and ‘The name is Galt. John Galt.’ Sales of Rand’s classic Atlas Shrugged have soared in 2009, above a level that was already extremely impressive for a 1,000-page, critically unloved, 52-year-old novel. Two major publishing houses brought out new biographies of Rand almost simultaneously this fall. And after decades of Hollywood development limbo, Atlas Shrugged may finally be hitting the screen soon in the form of a cable mini-series starring Charlize Theron.”

The two Americas: "Could Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards actually be right about something? Not where to go to get a haircut, mind you, I mean about there being two Americas. There is the vibrant America … and the stagnant one. There is the America of ever-increasing wealth, innovation, creativity, new products and services. Choices galore. And there is the politician’s America: The regulated America, the subsidized America, the earmarked America. The failing America.”

Big Brother is getting bigger: "In George Orwell’s classic ‘1984,’ Big Brother was the personification of Big Government. He was always there to protect citizens and to steer them in the ‘right’ direction ‘for their own good.’ To maintain the status quo (i.e. government as the ultimate authority), Orwell’s Big Brother did everything from rewriting history and redefining language to engaging in constant prophylactic surveillance of citizens on the streets and in their homes. In the world of ‘1984,’ thorough records were kept on each and every citizen, and paranoia and fear alone ensured that Big Brother’s control was absolute even when his technological eyes might randomly be turned elsewhere.”

Nancy Pelosi: The General Custer of our time: "Speaker Pelsosi is the General Custer of our time. She is leading her troops to slaughter at the polls in 2010. The Speaker is vastly outnumbered by a majority of Americans do not want the healthcare reforms dictated by House Bill passed Saturday evening. According to a poll by Rasmussen Reports, 52% of Americans are opposed to the Democrats’ plans for healthcare reforms. A majority of Americans believe that the legislation will increase costs and will result in a lower standard of healthcare to boot. … Like Custer, Pelosi refuses to see what there is to be seen. The Democrats have manufactured a ‘crisis’ on healthcare when we have an honest to goodness national economic crisis they refuse to deal with.”

Hell, No! We won’t send our tax $$$ to China: "Taking candy from a baby: A consortium of Chinese and American companies goes to Washington and announces plans to build a $1.5 billion windmill farm in West Texas using $450 million in U.S. stimulus funds, which will create 2,330 jobs — 2,000 of them in China. The baby — Washington — doesn’t cry or whine or spit in the consortium’s face. That’s what’s really wrong with this story. So accustomed to being bought and sold, Washington simply begins processing forms so it can hand over your tax dollars to create jobs in a turbine factory in the city of Shenyang, China at a subsidy of $193,133 each. It’s like these bureaucrats live in Wonderland. Or an America where the unemployment rate isn’t 10.2 percent.”

The dead zone: The implicit marginal tax rate: "To say that antipoverty programs in the United States are perverted may be an understatement. When you take into account the loss of means-tested benefits (e.g., cash assistance, food stamps, housing subsidies, and health insurance), and the taxes that people pay on earned income, the return to working is essentially zero for those in the lower two quintiles of the income distribution. For many of the working poor, the implicit marginal tax rate is greater than 100 percent.”

Seven reasons why Congress should repeal, not fix, the death tax: "The House and Senate may soon begin debate on what to do with the federal estate tax. If Congress fails to act before January 1, 2010, current law calls for death taxes to disappear entirely for one year before returning in 2011 at a top rate of 55 percent and a $1 million exemption of taxable estate. The 2009 tax rate is 45 percent, and the exemption stands at $3.5 million per taxpayer. What should Congress do?”

Sued for success: "Computer chip maker Intel is back in court. On Wednesday, New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo filed a federal antitrust lawsuit against the firm. The suit follows a record-shattering $1.5 billion antitrust fine levied on Intel by the European Union last May. Going after Intel might allow Cuomo to score political points — never mind the inconvenient fact that Advanced Micro Devices, Intel’s arch-rival, is building a massive new factory in New York — but this legal assault will only stymie innovation in the computer chip market.”

The control imperative: "That is why the easiest way to transform purely visual or informational control into physical control is to cede the task of creating the latter onto external forces, especially those working at the behest of an impersonal and de facto ownerless entity. No other institutions are better suited for such a cession than the institutions of representative democracy — their character allows an envious and greedy individual to merge his own envy and greed with that exhibited by millions of others, and then use it as the material to forge a redistributionist system by the hands of those who can no longer be called robbers hired by Mr. Lazybones to loot the resources of Mr. Diligent, but should be called the executors of the common will instead. As soon as this happens, all potential pangs of conscience and fears of ostracism disappear — acts of plunder and predation (henceforth known as acts of rectification) are no longer committed by any particular, individual person, but only by a vast, collective immaterial entity, whose corporeal representatives are to be regarded as tools of historical justice. The whole process is complemented by far-reaching ritualization of the actions of the abovementioned entity, as well as by the attendant series of semantic distortions, which make unequivocal identification of aggression, violence, coercion, theft and enslavement (let alone successful elimination of these phenomena) incomparably more difficult than it was before.”

The GOP’s civil “civil war”: "I have been thoroughly amused by all this talk about a ‘civil war’ within the Republican Party, supposedly due to divisive ‘conservative’ factions who, going rogue, are disturbing the Newtonian equilibrium of ‘mainstream’ party regulars. What balderdash. The present tension between conservative, moderate and liberal branches of the GOP, not to mention the differing relative priorities of the components of the Reaganite triad of economic, national security, and social conservatives, is at least as old as the struggle between the old Taft and Eisenhower struggle, and even more relevant to today’s discussion, Ronald Regan’s challenge to Gerald Ford, then a sitting president, albeit by appointment of the departing, defeated Richard Nixon. Reagan then followed up his defeat with a victory over George Bush, Senior, in 1980, another classic contest between conservative ‘insurgents’ and mainstream, blue-blood Republicans.”

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here

****************************

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)

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009



Must not portray Hitler as human

The official wisdom is that he was an abnormal monster or freak. They are afraid that people will find out that he was a fairly mainstream socialist by the standards of his day

When intimate colour film of Adolf Hitler cuddling a pet dog and smiling as a baby reached out to play with his moustache was shown for the first time at the Cannes Film Festival 36 years ago, a scuffle broke out in the audience and the screening had to be abandoned.

The documentary, Swastika, by the Australian director Philippe Mora, contained never-before seen footage of Hitler entertaining friends, family and his inner circle - including Hermann Goering and Joseph Goebbels. Much of it was shot by his lover Eva Braun at Hitler's mountain home in Obersalzberg, Bavaria.

The documentary later opened in several countries, including the US, Britain and France, but despite widespread critical acclaim from the art critic Robert Hughes in Time, The Washington Post and Le Monde, it was mothballed and Germany banned it.

Last week, however, Swastika - and Mora - were warmly welcomed back to Berlin. Championed by the German documentary maker, Ilona Ziok, the film was shown in the cinema used by the Nazis in Berlin, opened the Biberach Film Festival in Munich and special screenings are planned in Dresden this week.

Mora, who is Jewish, has lived in Los Angeles for more than 20 years. He was just 22 and living in London when he proposed documenting the making of Albert Speer's book Inside the Third Reich into a US-backed feature movie by the British producers, David Puttnam and former Fox boss, Sandy Lieberson.

When Hollywood pulled out of the Speer project, its producers agreed to back Mora and his research partner, the German filmmaker Lutz Becker, to finish their own film about the Nazification of Germany. Four months into production in 1972 they had managed to unearth the startling new footage in Pentagon archives.

SOURCE

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Free Enterprise— Time for Respect instead of Envy

Milton Friedman said with passion: “The record of history is absolutely clear that there is no alternative way, so far discovered, of improving the lot of ordinary people that can hold a candle to the productive activity that is unleashed by the free enterprise system.” American capitalism, as imperfect a system as it is, has made America the “shining city on the hill” where immigrants still stand in line and cross borders to find opportunity.

Those who worked hard to earn their American Dream used to be respected. They were a source of inspiration and jobs for those who aspired to their own success. Americans took pride in being the land of opportunity where anyone could better their position in life.

How then have those who have worked hard to achieve success now become the subject of envy and derision? When did it become acceptable for Americans to embrace candidates who could openly brag about redistributing the wealth of the top 5% of wage earners to subsidize their supporters?

A recent trip to the UK surfaced some clues. In Europe, many hold wealthy in such contempt that vandalism against the rich is growing.

In hopes of providing rich urban Paris commuters an alternative bicycle-rental system to match this age of global warming hysteria, the French have provided 20,600 sturdy bicycles—a low-cost, low-carbon alternative to using cars. In a blow to Parisian civility, 80% of the bicycles have been stolen, trashed or damaged. The stylish bicycles are seen as symbols of the “bobos,” the “bourgeois-bohem├Ęs,” the rich and trendy urban class. A sociologist reported in the International Herald Tribune commented: “They stir resentment and covetousness. They are often vandalized in a socially divided Paris by resentful, angry, or anarchic youth.”

At one of my leadership programs in Edinburgh, an international sales manager pointed to a beautiful, silver Porsche in the parking lot, “You don’t see many here anymore. Not because people can’t afford them, but because if you own one, you are likely to have the hood keyed by vandals. They don’t think the rich deserve what they own; they must have taken it from someone else to get to where they are. It’s tragic. I hope it never becomes that way in America. The American Dream isn’t just important to your country; it’s important to the world. In the past, America has been living proof that anyone can better themselves.”

Certainly media news has played a role, and some dishonest business people have given them all the ammunition they need to paint all “rich” achievers with the same brush. Whether it’s the Enron’s debacle, Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, or the sub-prime derivative abuses, some highly-visible executives failed to live up to the values they had on their walls. Rightfully, many have and continue to pay for their ethical lapses. Unfortunately, the good bosses, the ethical managers, the charitable rich benefactors and the job-creating entrepreneurs don’t make the headlines. Most of the rich earn their wealth from hard work. Many hire workers, support charities and provide dividends to stockholders.

Hollywood adds to the negative image of free enterprise and business executives. Robert Lichter and others have found that the negative portrayal of businesspeople has grown over the years. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, businesspeople were three times more likely to exhibit characteristics of rampant greed than were other characters in identifiable occupations. In the 1980s, business characters where 10 times more likely to exhibit greedy behaviors than were other characters. In the 1990s, Lichter found that 81 percent of the shows that addressed the question of whether business were honest and honorable or unfair and corrupt, portrayed business dealings as dishonest and corrupt.

Rather than a reward for offering valued goods and services, profit was ordinarily portrayed as the result of exploitation and fraud. Hollywood has no interest in showing the power of free enterprise to generate prosperity, to tap the human spirit’s pursuit of excellence and to create innovative products and services that make a difference to us all.

The church also does its part to create envy and chastise the “rich.” Pastors pray for “social justice” which has come to provide justification for redistribution and government services for the poor. Yes, Biblical passages make it clear that being “rich” has its challenges. Faith trumps wealth. How one uses one’s riches is crucial, but Jesus didn’t come to call Rome to institute universal healthcare. He called believers to be good stewards of their gifts and their money. Believers were to give to the poor, not to elect politicians to take from others to do the giving for them. As Margaret Thatcher once said, "No one would remember the Good Samaritan if he'd only had good intentions; he had money, too."

Then, of course, we have President Obama and his liberal Democrat leaders who have declared “war on wealth.” They’ve promised not to renew the Bush tax cuts on the top 5% of wage earners. The top 5 percent already pay 60.63 percent of all the individual income taxes collected, even though they earned only 37.44 percent of the money. The President wants them to give even more because they are not paying their “fair share.”

Lincoln believed in the American Dream for all Americans, but he never condoned any attack on the rich. He said, “I don’t believe in a law to prevent a man from getting rich; it would do more harm than good. So while we do not propose any war on capital, we do wish to allow the humblest man an equal chance to get rich with everybody else.” Lincoln understood what Obama and other class warriors never do. When American freedom and free enterprise is working, there’s no war between capital and labor. Capital and labor are the same people at different stages of their lives. Workers work to save, then to invest and ultimately to become owners of capital and entrepreneurs themselves.

Margaret Thatcher had another warning we should heed, "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money." It’s time we start showing a little respect to those that have and are making America work. Instead of trying to take from them and punish achievement, it’s time to learn from what they do and emulate it. President Obama is looking for new strategies that will unleash private economic growth. As Steve Forbes new book, How Capitalism Will Save Us, reminds us—we don’t need a new idea! The President can unleash a tried-and-true strategy—stop throwing money away on losing companies “too big to fail” and start rewarding companies willing to invent the future and hire more Americans to do it. Whether you want to believe it or not, the American Dream can still work if we let it.

SOURCE

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ELSEWHERE

Obama will meet Netanyahu at White House: "The White House announced Sunday that President Barack Obama will be meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu during the Israeli prime minister’s trip to Washington, ending days of uncertainty. Netanyahu was to arrive in the U.S. capital Sunday night for a speaking engagement at the three-day 2009 General Assembly of The Jewish Federations of North America. He will meet with Obama on Monday evening.”

Lieberman: Senate will investigate Army shootings: "The chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee says he plans to begin a congressional investigation of the shootings at Fort Hood. An Army major, Nidal Malik Hasan, is suspected of killing 13 people and wounding 29 others at the Army post in Texas. Sen. Joe Lieberman says he wants to determine whether the shootings constitute a terrorist attack. He says he also wants to find out whether the Army missed warning signs that Hasan was becoming extreme in his Islamist views.”

Obama sitting out Berlin Wall Anniversary: "President Obama squeezed in a trip to Copenhagen last month to lobby, unsuccessfully, for Chicago to host the 2016 Summer Olympics. He plans to travel to Oslo next month to accept the Nobel Peace Prize, an award that even Obama has said he does not deserve. And this coming week, he sets out on a weeklong tour of Asia. But the president does not plan to travel to Germany to attend the 20th anniversary celebration Monday of the fall of the Berlin Wall, drawing heated criticism from those who say he’s ignoring a shining triumph of American-inspired democracy.”

Jobless: 10 percent is tougher than it used to be: "It hurts more to be unemployed now than the last time the jobless rate hit 10 percent. Americans have more than triple the debt they had in 1982, and less than half the savings. They spend 10 weeks longer off the job. And a bigger share of them have no health insurance, leaving them one medical emergency away from financial ruin. For these reasons, the unemployed are more vulnerable today to foreclosure and bankruptcy than they were a generation ago.”

Truer U.S. unemployment rate hits recent high of 17.5%: "Each month, as regular readers know, I like to unpack the new unemployment number and get behind the data. The news this month continues to be grim. Indeed, it is climbing rapidly toward record-grim territory. The official U.S. unemployment rate in October rose to 10.2 percent from 9.8 percent in September, the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. But the truer measure of unemployment -- a total count of everyone who should be working full time but is not -- hit 17.5 percent in October, the highest level in modern times. The Labor Department changed to its new unemployment survey method in the mid-'90s, moving to the narrower count that gives you the official number, or today's 10.2 percent. Which, by the way, is nothing to sneeze at. It's the highest rate since 1983. Counts were obviously cruder during the Great Depression, but the 25 percent rate, reached during 1933, is analogous to our 17.5 percent today. Both numbers include the widest possible measure of unemployment."

Will Obama ever become President?: "Folks, we’re at the one year mark. It’s been exactly a year since Barack Obama was elected president and the question must be asked: How is Brand Obama doing? Take a look through the marketing lens and you’ll see that there are really two brands that make up today’s Brand Obama: Obama the candidate and Obama the president. Even though the election is long over, Obama the candidate is still hanging around. … Meanwhile, Obama the president has not really arrived. Barack Obama has not transitioned into the White House. Even his staunchest supporters don’t really feel like the man in the oval office is the change they have been waiting for. After all, Obama the president is so unlike Obama the candidate. Where Obama the candidate was bold, fresh and new, Obama the president seems like a big helping of big-government Democratic leftovers served cold. This is a dish virtually none of the electorate wants to eat and no one voted for"

A deadbeat Congress: "Jaws dropped when the government announced recently that the national debt would increase by $14,000,000,000,000 over the next decade. Right now, roughly every third dollar the government spends is one it does not have. Even more worrying is how politicians are reacting to the news. Few are talking about cutting spending, which would be politically difficult. Instead, Congress and the administration could resort to spending off-budget through a neat trick known as the unfunded mandate.”

Lousy jobs, in such small portions: "Two dissatisfied customers comment about a restaurant. One says, ‘The food here is terrible.’ The other replies, ‘I know, and such small portions!’ In many ways, they could be describing our current employment picture. Not only are the portions shrinking, but the jobs themselves are steadily losing quality.”

Does background count?: "In its November 7, 2009 (Saturday’s), issue The New York Times ran an editorial tutoring its readers in how they ought to ignore the background of the accused murderer of the soldiers in Texas. All that matters is what he did, not what groups he joined in the past. So, his being Muslim should be ignored and nothing should be concluded about any Muslims in the light of his actions. Now this advice has a ring of truth to it except that it is wrong. Certainly not all Muslims may be suspected of bad intentions in light of what one Muslim does. Not without some additional information. Did the shooter’s motivation stem from his Islamic convictions? Maybe a version of Islam, a radical variety, had something to do with how he felt or what he believed about his victims. If so, then his ‘background’ certainly needs to be attended to. It all depends what aspect of his background one has in mind.”

Bailout promises, Mao’s famine and bad incentives: "I suspect a lot of people are shocked by the blatant falsification of statistics by various government bureaucrats, at different levels, which gives a pretense to the Obama administration to claim their stimulus package created, or saved, jobs. I’m not sure why people are surprised at all. One of the problems with the bureaucratic system of management is that such self-reporting is often the criteria used to measure ’success.’ The problem is that the incentives for the bureaucrats are such that they pushed to fudge the numbers, in whichever direction necessary, to please their superiors. In the bureaucratic system pleasing the overlords, is necessary for advancement. So it’s best to tell them what they want to hear.”

Thugocracy: Another SEIU Beating Reported -- in CA: "A state worker is recovering after a bloody brawl at a union hall. He says members of the local SEIU 1000 beat him up and sent him to the hospital all because he wanted to expose alleged corruption within the union. Ken Hamidi is a state worker at the California Franchise Tax Board. Last night he walked into a union hall in Sacramento for an SEIU local 1000 meeting. "We had every right to be here, very simple; it wasn't anything private or anything exclusive," said Hamidi. But Hamidi says the union members did not want him there. "Three, four people jumped at me, wrestled with me, then did all that," said Hamidi. "I was covered in blood and then over to the emergency room." So why did this happen? Besides being a state worker, Hamidi says he's an unpaid reporter for a cable access show and a vocal critic of the SEIU. He calls the state workers' union corrupt. "This is a union hall that is leased and is being furnished and equipped and everything with our money," said Hamidi. Hamidi says he came to the hall to expose how he says SEIU union leaders are spending tens of thousands of dollars on a political race"

There is a new lot of postings by Chris Brand just up -- on his usual vastly "incorrect" themes of race, genes, IQ etc.

My Twitter.com identity: jonjayray. My Facebook page is also accessible as jonjayray (In full: http://www.facebook.com/jonjayray). For more blog postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH, POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, GUN WATCH, SOCIALIZED MEDICINE, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, EYE ON BRITAIN and Paralipomena

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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)

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