Monday, December 31, 2012


Though some gloomy thoughts are realistic too as we look ahead


The economic future


I am afraid she might be right


But this might give us hope

An American teen (in the yellow hazard suit) who built a working fusor (nuclear fusion reactor) in his spare time.  A society that produces such a kid and gives him such opportunities has unfathomable potential.  And he is not alone.  Other hobbyists build fusors.



And even the Soviets allowed this music to thrive

The piano player, Emil Gilels, was a Ukrainian Jew and a Soviet citizen


Generation Obama: Unemployed, Debt-Ridden, and Homeless

It might seem easy to say, “you get what you vote for,” to the millions of young voters who supported President Obama and now can’t find work.

But, with a record number of young Americans becoming homeless, blaming the victim of President Obama’s well-crafted rhetoric doesn’t seem right.

In one of his last campaign speeches, President Obama told a crowd of people at the University of Wisconsin--Madison, “We tried our ideas; they worked. The economy grew. We created jobs.”

This sham President Obama cooked-up is nothing short of immoral for the millions of young Americans that have been living in Obama’s economic hell the last four years.

The Democratic Party renders themselves as the party of compassion, yet under any measurement, young Americans have never been more economically miserable under any other President in recorded history.

And, the misery continues to worsen. A recent article in The New York Times reported that young people are “the new face of a national homeless population, one that poverty experts and case workers say is growing.” And according to Andrea Bailey, the executive director of the Community Food and Outreach Center, it is becoming increasingly more common for young people to seek help from homeless shelters.

The cities of Los Angeles and Boston attempted to count the exact number of young Americans that have been forced to move onto the streets. In 2011, it was estimated that 3,600 young Americans were living on the streets of Los Angeles. The number rises significantly if you count those temporarily sleeping on their friends’ couch.

The amount of young Americans in Boston seeking shelter represented 12 percent of the total homeless population in 2011, up 3 percentage points from the previous year. But they fear that this isn’t anywhere close to the actual number of young Americans occupying their streets. “It’s a significant enough jump to know that it’s also just the tip of the iceberg,” said Jim Greene, director of emergency shelters for the Boston Public Health Commission.

This news is incredibly disheartening, but should we be surprised? No. While President Obama boasted from his ivory towers on the campaign trail that over 4.5 million jobs have been created in the last four years, young Americans have had a drastically different experience.

In the last four years under President Obama, 397,000 youth jobs were destroyed and youth unemployment averaged 17.5 percent--the highest level in recorded history. 53 percent of recent graduates are unemployed or underemployed, and young Americans currently represent 40 percent of the total unemployed population.

While recent numbers suggest youth unemployment is going down, more young people continue to drop out of the work force. In the month of November alone, 153,000 young Americans ages 20-24 completely gave up looking for work and the Labor Force Participation rate dropped from 54.4 percent to 54.1 percent.

I guess they didn’t want anything to do with those 4.5 million private sector jobs that President Obama claimed he created.

Youth unemployment is a serious problem. Homelessness is even more unfathomable. But the real concern lies in the mentality that this type of environment is creating among Millennials.

Anyone forced to live a life on the streets lives a life of survival. Instead of looking for a job, you’re looking for the next meal. Instead of helping businesses grow and create jobs for these young people, President Obama has been satisfied growing the welfare state and providing the next meal. The government food stamp program has grown 50 percent during his term.

The Obama economy is taking the wind out of the sails of these young Americans fresh out of college who truly wanted to start their careers. This President and this economy are breeding a new generation of entitlement and dependency by letting young people believe that it is acceptable to solely rely on the government.

But this won’t get them very far. Young people were sold a bill of goods this election, and they bought it--even after the last four years of economic hell. It’s only downhill from here.

Conservatives have failed to step in and articulate the message that more freedom and less government spending create more jobs and more independence for young people. Until they do so--or until our economy totally fails--young Americans will continue to fall into the Obama entitlement trap.

With no jobs and nowhere to turn but to President Obama, an overwhelming majority of the population will be in favor of a dependency-centered, debt-ridden government. We see it happening in Europe, and look where it’s gotten them. We’d be naive to think it wouldn’t happen here. Conservative leaders have the moral obligation to propose a brighter future for young Americans and our country to ensure it doesn’t.



Tackling Fairness and Justice

The last year has been a tough one for conservatives. The hope that four years of failed policy would be enough to repudiate the liberal/progressive ideology of the Obama administration ended when the majority of the American public voted to maintain their entitlements -- so long as someone else paid for them. And the conservative response to the debacle has been for the various factions within the movement to declare war on each other.

It's time for conservatives to give serious thought to what they believe and how they can make a more persuasive case that conservative principles offer the best path for America. Conservatives have to do more than invoke small government, lower taxes and protection of the family. They have to explain the principles on which such policies are based and why those principles are more likely to fulfill the promise of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness on which the nation was founded.

Liberals always argue for their policies on the basis of fairness and justice. It's only fair, they say, that those who have the most share what they have with those who have less. The whole basis of the progressive tax system rests on this principle -- and it is at the heart of the Obama tax message even now.

Conservatives' arguments that this economic redistribution will harm the economy (it will) or that the taxes raised still won't be enough to pay for ever-expanding entitlements (they won't) never confront the false premise that the principle is just and fair in the first place. Here is where conservatives seem to have lost their footing, almost as if they no longer know why they believe what they do.

The idea that it is right and just for one group of persons to take from another the fruits of their labor simply because they have more political power would strike most people as unjust. Yet, the debate around raising tax rates on the rich ultimately boils down to that.

At least in the short run, we could raise more revenue to pay for government programs by raising taxes on everyone -- rich and middle class alike (few people argue for making the poor pay taxes) -- than we could by taxing only those who earn $250,000 or more. No politician argues for that because middle class Americans still make up the voting majority in this country and the middle class have no interest in redistributing their own hard-earned wealth. And why should they? Most people believe they're entitled to what they've earned through their own efforts.

But this natural response actually stems from an understanding that it is a basic right for a man to enjoy the rewards of his own labor. If a man works twice as hard as his neighbor or is more skillful, is it really fair or just to say that that individual should be entitled to keep less of what he earns?

That is not to say that conservatives should forget about the poor and needy, but here again, their arguments should rest on principle not politics. There is no right to be taken care of (except among children, the severely disabled or very old). But there is a moral obligation -- for the individual and community -- to take care of those who cannot take care of themselves. So, too, is there a moral obligation on the part of the individual not to take advantage of others' charity to avoid taking care of himself and his family -- if at all possible. Conservatives too often act as if the problem with social welfare programs is that they cost too much, rather than to point out the way in which they breach both moral obligation and responsibility.

It's not too late for conservatives to try to make these arguments -- but first they have to understand them and believe them themselves. Conservatives shouldn't concede the justice or fairness arguments of liberals; they should tackle them head on.



Religious business owners determined to enforce their First Amendment rights

Now that Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor has denied Hobby Lobby’s application for an emergency injunction protecting them from Obamacare’s HHS Mandate on abortion and birth control, Hobby Lobby has decided to defy the federal government to remain true to their religious beliefs, at enormous risk and financial cost.
Hobby Lobby is wholly owned and controlled by the Green family, who are evangelical Christians. The Greens are committed to running their business in accordance with their Christian faith, believing that God wants them to conduct their professional business in accordance with the family’s understanding of the Bible. Hobby Lobby’s mission statement includes, “Honoring the Lord in all we do by operating the company … consistent with Biblical principles.”

The HHS Mandate goes into effect for Hobby Lobby on Jan. 1, 2013. The Greens correctly understand that some of the drugs the HHS Mandate requires them to cover at no cost in their healthcare plans cause abortions.

Today Hobby Lobby announced that they will not comply with this mandate to become complicit in abortion, which the Greens believe ends an innocent human life. Given Hobby Lobby’s size (it has 572 stores employing more than 13,000 people), by violating the HHS Mandate, it will be subject to over $1.3 million in fines per day. That means over $40 million in fines in January alone. If their case takes another ten months to get before the Supreme Court—which would be the earliest it could get there under the normal order of business—the company would incur almost a half-billion dollars in fines. And then of course the Supreme Court would have to write an opinion in what would likely be a split decision with dissenters, which could easily take four or six months and include hundreds of millions of dollars in additional penalties.

This is civil disobedience, consistent with America’s highest traditions when moral issues are at stake. The Greens are a law-abiding family. They have no desire to defy their own government. But as the Founders launched the American Revolution because they believed the British government was violating their rights, the Greens believe that President Barack Obama and Secretary Kathleen Sebelius are commanding the Greens to sin against God, and that no government has the lawful authority to do so.

The Christian tradition of defying government commands to do something wrong goes back to the very birth of Christianity. When the apostles were ordered not to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with anyone, the Book of Acts records: “Peter and the other apostles replied: ‘We must obey God rather than men! The God of our fathers raised Jesus from the dead—whom you had killed by hanging him on a tree.’”

Eleven of the twelve apostles—including Peter—would lose their lives for the sake of spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ; only the apostle John died of old age. They were determined to obey God’s will at all costs.

This issue of civil disobedience is never to be undertaken lightly. The Bible teaches Christians to submit to all legitimate governmental authority (e.g., Romans 13:1), and so a person can only disobey the government when there is no other way to obey God.

But here in America, the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land, and in its First Amendment it protects against a government establishment of an official religion and separately protects the free exercise of religion. On top of that, Congress passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA) to specifically add an additional layer of protection against government actions that violate a person’s religious beliefs.

The HHS Mandate is a gross violation of the religious beliefs of the Green family. The issue before the courts here is whether the Greens religious-liberty rights include running their secular, for-profit business consistent with their religious beliefs. In other words, is religious liberty just what you do in church on a Sunday morning, or does it include what you do during the week at your job?

The Greens are now putting their fortunes on the line to do what they believe is right. The courts should side with them, affirming a broad scope of religious liberty under the Constitution and RFRA. And the Supreme Court should resolve this matter with dispatch in their favor.

Millions of Christians across the country feel exactly the same way as the Greens. The Obama administration has issued a statist command that is a declaration of war on people of faith who object to abortion, and civil disobedience could break out all over the country unless the courts set this matter right—and quickly.




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


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)

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a war criminal. Both British and American codebreakers had cracked the Japanese naval code so FDR knew what was coming at Pearl Harbor.  But for his own political reasons he warned no-one there.  So responsibility for the civilian and military deaths at Pearl Harbor lies with FDR as well as with the Japanese.  The huge firepower available at Pearl Harbor, both aboard ship and on land, could have largely neutered the attack.  Can you imagine 8 battleships and various lesser craft firing all their AA batteries as the Japanese came in?  The Japanese naval airforce would have been annihilated and the war would have been over before it began.


Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sunday Sabbath

I put up a full lot of postings yesterday so I am taking today off.  I prefer the thinking behind the Jewish Sabbath but St Paul said Christians can celebrate any day they like so who am I to argue?


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Extraordinary defences of Ivy League racism

After the huge body of evidence marshalled by Ron Unz to show discrimination against Asians at the Ivies, here is one of the "replies" published by the NYT in response:

"Some allege specifically that affirmative action harms Asian applicants, capping the Asian population at elite universities. In reality, there is no evidence that this is the case."

The lamebrain concerned appears to think, obviously correctly, that mere denial of the Unz evidence will suffice for the NYT.  She dismisses it with a wave of her hand without addressing it at all.  Any rubbish will do for the NYT as long as the conclusions suit the NYT, it seems.  This is below the quality of supermarket tabloids, which do at least pretend to look at evidence for their claims.

Another reply which at least admits the Unz evidence simply reiterates the nasty stereotype of Asians as bespectacled nerds with no opinions of their own.

Given the huge preference now given by the Ivies to Jewish applicants,  I suppose I could be equally racist in reverse and say that Asians are simply more polite than loud-mouthed NYC Jews.   It just shows what a slippery slope racism can be and is thoroughly obnoxious for all the reasons that Leftists never tire of telling us about.  Steve Sailer gives it a thorough fisking.


Liberalism’s Petty Agenda

By David Bozeman

The idea that the American left would delight in the political demise of conservative white males certainly comes as a shock to no one.  That theme has animated talk radio since the election.  And let’s give the Democrats their due — they have, with the assistance of media and entertainment, mastered political warfare and left the GOP flailing, unsure and uninspired.

But New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd recently laid bare the cynical, shallow, juvenile mindset that secured President Obama a second term.  In a recent piece “The Lost Civilization,’ she writes that the world did, indeed, end on December 21 — for “arrogant, uptight, entitled, bossy, retrogressive white guys.”

Citing demographic trends not typically favorable to conservatives and Republicans, she surmises that someday a National Geographic special will profile this “lost tribe” and feature such relics as film footage of Clint Eastwood and the empty chair and recorded ramblings of “a tall, stiff man, his name long forgotten, gnashing his teeth about the 47 percent moochers.”

And she prattles on, with no vision or intellectual engagement — these are tauntings more believable in a Mean Girls sequel. Conservatives and libertarians predicate their movements on ideas, always pondering what America will look like twenty years hence.  Maureen Dowd, who, sadly, speaks for millions, doesn’t even feign interest in the implications of policy — she’s one of the cool cats shooting barbs at “Whitey” and she wants you to know it.

We are now seeing the Balkanization of America at its most sophomoric, and the realization of why our founders fought to safeguard future generations from the dictates of unlimited, group-against-group majority rule.  Dowd is correct in that white conservative guys are no longer deemed important electorally, while Hispanics and others are now flexing their political muscles and can expect to be wooed with sickening excesses before 2016.

We on the right are not consumed with group identity.  We share the vision of our founders of individual autonomy and limited central power to promote the general welfare.

Only a liberal is granted such wide latitude in snidely dismissing entire population blocs.  But the greater truth is that conservatives, in all their pasty, white-maleness, are not the American anomaly (bear in mind, Obama won roughly 50 percent of the vote this time, down from 2008).  Liberal elites such as Maureen Dowd are.  They can champion the benevolence of the progressive agenda, knowing that they, in their posh New York townhouses and Malibu estates, will remain largely untouched by the excesses and uniformity sure to follow.

Obamacare will one day affect every individual American, but most liberal elites harbor no vision beyond their next MSNBC appearance.  In the meantime, they live in secure communities, their children attend private schools and they need never feel guilty about coast-to-coast air travel provided they purchase carbon offsets.

As Mark Steyn has so brilliantly observed, warnings of societal decline fall on deaf ears — after all, New York still boasts Broadway, Lincoln Center, fine dining, Greenwich Village, etc. So what if the rest of the country is run like Detroit?  And besides, we haven’t formally discarded America’s defining values and traditions, and only European nations ever really face bankruptcy.

Truth is, the left seldom engages those concerned with financial and social collapse, they simply demonize them and finally discard them as irrelevant.  Dowd doesn’t even earn points for originality — whole cottage industries have been predicting the demise of conservative thought for at least fifty years.

Some say that demography is destiny.  I believe that character is, both for individuals and nations.  Let us hope that America’s character is never defined by the likes of Maureen Dowd.



The untroubled arrogance of the Left

It must be so wonderful to know it all

While CNN’s Piers Morgan is a well known critic of America’s Second Amendment, he has now ventured into a new campaign to reform another document critical in the development of western civilization; the Bible.

During a discussion on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight” on Monday — Christmas Eve — with Saddleback Church Pastor Rick Warren, Morgan argued that there needs to be an “amendment to the Bible” for same-sex marriage, because like the Constitution, the Bible is “inherently flawed.”

“Both the Bible and the Constitution were well intentioned but they are basically, inherently flawed. Hence, the need to amend it,” Morgan told Warren during a conversation where Morgan emphasized the need for America to separate Church and State.

“My point to you about gay rights, for example, it’s time for an amendment to the Bible.”

“Uh, no,” replied Warren, in a conversation that remained civil between both parties. “Not a chance. What I believe is flawed is human opinion, because it constantly changes.”

Morgan has attracted more media attention than usual over the last few weeks as he has increased his always vocal cries for increased gun control laws in America following the Newtown elementary school shooting earlier this month.  Morgan’s campaign has infuriated Second Amendment enthusiasts, leading to a petition to the White House signed by over 75,000 calling for the CNN host’s deportation back to Britain. This development led to a counter protest in the UK “Stop Piers Morgan from being deported back to the UK from America.”



Socialism v. Charity

With the fiscal cliff looming, Washington is looking under every rock for new forms of “revenue.”

Nothing is sacred, not even the mortgage and charitable deductions, which some are recasting as “loopholes.” Ending the mortgage deduction when the housing market is finally showing signs of recovery would be like giving a cancer patient strychnine to make him feel better.

Even worse would be ending the charitable deduction, for the simple reason that this deduction encourages private sector benevolence, which the federal government under Barack Obama treats as pesky competition.

As government grows, the private sector wanes, a situation created by the decline of strong families and abetted by progressive programs designed to make families irrelevant.

When it comes to serving the needy, there are two basic approaches. The first, inspired by Jesus Christ and required in the Old Testament, is sacrificial giving of oneself. This has been the cornerstone of American charity since the nation’s founding, and it remains the most effective way to assist the poor.

The diametrically opposite approach is socialism, in which income is forcibly seized and then redistributed to groups and individuals favored by government officials. Socialism is rooted in the formula from Karl Marx—“from each according to his abilities to each according to his needs.”

That’s a fine arrangement when voluntary, such as in families, churches and private charities. However, when imposed by force—and socialism is always accompanied by force since it violates human nature—it is soft tyranny masquerading as charity.

Since the 1930s, with the advent of the New Deal, the federal government, along with local and state governments, has taken on more and more functions that were handled by families and faith-based charities. Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society sent this into overdrive, and Barack Obama is intent on nailing America to a third-stage rocket into socialism.

Social Security, the largest government income transfer program, was originally aimed at assisting intact families and widows. Now, it’s an ever-growing tax on employees and employers that has driven a wedge between the generations. How? Because in the past, parents had more children partly to insure that someone would provide for them in their old age.

Social Security removed the advantage of having children, since it guarantees income based solely on age (and previous employment). Someone who has no children gets the same amount as someone who had six children who grew up to pay into the system, thus supporting the childless retiree. Children are very expensive, as any parent can tell you. Social Security makes having them less advantageous. Of course, Social Security has allowed millions of older Americans to live in at least minimally comfortable circumstances. Political talk of privatizing any aspect of Social Security is hazardous, and any hint of ending Social Security as we know it is political suicide. Americans have come to count on Social Security, so the challenge is how to sustain it without bankrupting the next generation.

The same can be said of Medicare, Medicaid and many other enormous federal programs. The advantages are obvious, but the downsides are not so obvious – except for America’s $16 trillion-and-growing debt. To pay for all this, the average American family’s tax burden has risen from a mere 2% of income in 1948 to something approaching 40 percent when all taxes are accounted for.

This has forced many mothers into the workplace who would, all things being equal, rather spend the time raising their children. It’s also created a huge market for paid childcare, with the government subsidizing it. Families pay taxes to create a system that offers incentives for them to spend less time with their own children.

On April 21, 2009, President Obama signed a bill, the “Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act,” tripling the size of the federal government’s paid “volunteer” programs, including AmeriCorps. The plan will spend $5.7 billion over the next five years and $10 billion over the next 10 years, and put 250,000 paid “volunteers” on the government payroll.

Why would anyone think that government involvement would improve volunteerism? On the Senate floor, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) warned:  "…Our history shows us when Government gets involved, it tends to take something that is working and make it not work nearly as well. Civil society works because it is everything Government is not. It is small, it is personal, it is responsive, it is accountable.”

In 2009, Harvard economics Prof. Martin Feldstein warned that Obama’s plan to target charities could severely hurt nonprofits:  “President Obama’s proposal to limit the tax deductibility of charitable contributions would effectively transfer more than $7 billion a year from the nation’s charitable institutions to the federal government.”

Taken together, a massive increase in government aid to paid “volunteers” and reducing incentives for charitable giving are a double-barreled shotgun aimed at the private sector.



Why Arabs Hate And Kill Palestinians

by Khaled Abu Toameh

More than 800 Palestinians have been killed and hundreds others injured since the beginning of the crisis in Syria nearly two years ago.

In the past two weeks, thousands of Palestinians were forced to flee the Yarmouk refugee camp near Damascus after Syrian jets bombed their homes, killing dozens of people.

More than 3000 refugees have fled to neighboring Lebanon, where some politicians and cabinet ministers are already calling for closing the border to stop the influx of Palestinians into their country.

The Arab world, meanwhile, has done nothing to help the Palestinians in Syria.

The Arab League did not hold an emergency meeting to discuss what Palestinians described as "massacres" against the refugees in Yarmouk, home to some 50,000 people.

This is not the first time that Palestinians living in Arab countries find themselves caught in conflicts between rival parties. Those who meddle in the internal affairs of Arab countries should not be surprised when bombs start falling on their homes.

The Palestinians have a long history of involving themselves in the internal affairs of Arab countries and later complaining when they fall victim to violence. They complain they are being killed but not saying why they keep getting into trouble.

Palestinians are not always innocent victims. They bring tragedy on themselves and then want to blame everyone else but themselves.

In Syria, a Palestinian terrorist group called Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine - General Command, which is headed by Ahmed Jibril, had been helping the Syrian regime in its attempts to suppress the opposition. Jibril's terrorists are reported to have kidnapped, tortured and murdered hundreds of anti-regime Syrians over the past two years.

The last time an Arab army bombed a Palestinian refugee camp was in Lebanon. In 2007, the Lebanese army destroyed most of the Nahr al-Bared camp after another terrorist group, Fatah al-Islam set up bases there and attacked army checkpoints, killing several soldiers.

In the 70s and 80s, Palestinians played a major role in the Lebanon civil war, which claimed the lives of more than 150,000 people.

The Palestinians also payed a price for meddling in the internal affairs of Iraq. After the collapse of Saddam Hussein's regime, thousands of Palestinians were forced out of Iraq for helping the dictator oppress his people for many years.

After the liberation of Kuwait more than 20 years ago, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were expelled from the tiny emirate and other Gulf countries. Their crime was that they had supported Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait -- a country that for many years had provided the PLO with billions of dollars in aid.

Jordan was the first Arab country to punish the Palestinians for meddling in its internal affairs. In 1970, the late King Hussein ordered his army to crush armed Palestinian organizations that had severely undermined his monarchy. The violence resulted in the deaths of thousands of Palestinians and ended with the expulsion of the PLO to Lebanon.

What happened in the Yarmouk refugee camp in the past few days shows that the Palestinians have not learned from their previous mistakes and are continuing to meddle in the internal affairs of Arab countries. That is perhaps why the Arabs are reluctant to help the Palestinians overcome their financial hardships.

Arab League foreign ministers recently promised to provide the Palestinian Authority with $100m. per month to solve its financial crisis. But the Palestinians have not yet seen one dollar from the promised aid. And if they continue to meddle in the internal affairs of their Arab brothers, the only thing they will see is more bombs falling on their homes and thousands of people forced out of their refugee camps.




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


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)

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a war criminal. Both British and American codebreakers had cracked the Japanese naval code so FDR know what was coming at Pearl Harbor.  But for his own political reasons he warned no-one there.  So responsibility for the civilian and military deaths at Pearl Harbor lies with FDR as well as with the Japanese.  The huge firepower available at Pearl Harbor, both aboard ship and on land, could have largely  neutered the attack.  Can you imagine 8 battleships and various lesser craft firing their AA batteries as the Japanese came in?


Friday, December 28, 2012

Kwanzaa: Holiday Brought to You By The FBI

 Ann Coulter

Is it just me, or does Kwanzaa seem to come earlier and earlier each year? And let's face it, Kwanzaa's gotten way too commercialized.

A few years ago, I suspended my annual Kwanzaa column because my triumph over this fake holiday seemed complete. The only people still celebrating Kwanzaa were presidential-statement writers and white female public school teachers.

But it seems to be creeping back. A few weeks ago, House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., complained about having to stick around Washington for fiscal cliff negotiations by accusing Republicans of not caring about "families" coming together to bond during Kwanzaa. The private schools have picked up this PC nonsense from the public schools. (Soon, no one will know anything.)

It is a fact that Kwanzaa was invented in 1966 by a black radical FBI stooge, Ron Karenga -- aka Dr. Maulana Karenga -- founder of United Slaves, a violent nationalist rival to the Black Panthers. He was also a dupe of the FBI.

In what was ultimately a foolish gamble, during the madness of the '60s, the FBI encouraged the most extreme black nationalist organizations in order to discredit and split the left. The more preposterous the group, the better.

By that criterion, Karenga's United Slaves was perfect. In the annals of the American '60s, Karenga was the Father Gapon, stooge of the czarist police.

Despite modern perceptions that blend all the black activists of the '60s, the Black Panthers did not hate whites. They did not seek armed revolution (although some of their most high-profile leaders were drug dealers and murderers). Those were the precepts of Karenga's United Slaves.

United Slaves were proto-fascists, walking around in dashikis, gunning down Black Panthers and adopting invented "African" names. (That was a big help to the black community: How many boys named "Jamal" are currently in prison?)

It's as if David Duke invented a holiday called "Anglika," which he based on the philosophy of "Mein Kampf" -- and clueless public school teachers began celebrating the made-up, racist holiday.

Whether Karenga was a willing dupe, or just a dupe, remains unclear.

Curiously, in a 1995 interview with Ethnic NewsWatch, Karenga matter-of-factly explained that the forces out to get O.J. Simpson for the "framed" murder of two whites included: "the FBI, the CIA, the State Department, Interpol, the Chicago Police Department" and so on. Karenga should know about FBI infiltration. (He further noted that the evidence against O.J. "was not strong enough to prohibit or eliminate unreasonable doubt" -- an interesting standard of proof.)

In the category of the-gentleman-doth-protest-too-much, back in the '70s, Karenga was quick to criticize rumors that black radicals were government-supported. When Nigerian newspapers claimed that some American black radicals were CIA operatives, Karenga publicly denounced the idea, saying, "Africans must stop generalizing about the loyalties and motives of Afro-Americans, including the widespread suspicion of black Americans being CIA agents."

Now we know that the FBI fueled the bloody rivalry between the Panthers and United Slaves. In one barbarous outburst, Karenga's United Slaves shot to death two Black Panthers on the UCLA campus: Al "Bunchy" Carter and John Huggins. Karenga himself served time, a useful stepping-stone for his current position as a black studies professor at California State University at Long Beach.

Karenga's invented holiday is a nutty blend of schmaltzy '60s rhetoric, black racism and Marxism. The seven principles of Kwanzaa are the very same seven principles of the Symbionese Liberation Army, another charming legacy of the Worst Generation.

In 1974, Patricia Hearst, kidnap victim-cum-SLA revolutionary, posed next to the banner of her alleged captors, a seven-headed cobra. Each snake head stood for one of the SLA's revolutionary principles: Umoja, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba and Imani -- the exact same seven "principles" of Kwanzaa.

Kwanzaa praises collectivism in every possible area of life -- economics, work, personality, even litter removal. ("Kuumba: Everyone should strive to improve the community and make it more beautiful.") It takes a village to raise a police snitch.

When Karenga was asked to distinguish Kawaida, the philosophy underlying Kwanzaa, from "classical Marxism," he essentially said that, under Kawaida, we also hate whites. (Kawaida, Kwanzaa and Kuumba are also the only three Kardashian sisters not to have their own shows on the E! network.)

While taking the "best of early Chinese and Cuban socialism" -- excluding, one hopes, the forced abortions, imprisonment of homosexuals and forced labor -- Karenga said Kawaida practitioners believe one's racial identity "determines life conditions, life chances and self-understanding." There's an inclusive philosophy for you.

Kwanzaa was the result of a '60s psychosis grafted onto the black community. Liberals have become so mesmerized by multicultural nonsense that they have forgotten the real history of Kwanzaa and Karenga's United Slaves -- the violence, the Marxism, the insanity.

Most absurdly, for leftists anyway, they have forgotten the FBI's tacit encouragement of this murderous black nationalist cult founded by the father of Kwanzaa.

Kwanzaa emerged not from Africa, but from the FBI's COINTELPRO. It is a holiday celebrated exclusively by idiot white liberals. Black people celebrate Christmas. (Merry Christmas, fellow Christians!)



Why Are Taxpayers Paying Union Officials' So Much?

 Taxpayers are forking out $4.8 million for 35 union officials at the Department of Transportation. But the beneficiary here isn't the taxpayer, it's President Obama, who is raking campaign cash from these unions.

According to documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act by Americans for Limited Government, 35 officials, representing mostly air traffic controllers' unions, are members of the $100,000 club among federal employees.

Unlike the average American, or even average DOT employee, these union officials draw an average $138,000 in salary and benefits from the federal government, not to give something of value to the taxpayers, but to work exclusively for their unions — the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (Natca), the AFL-CIO-affiliated Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (Pass) and two others.

Eight make more than $170,000. The lowest-paid gets $80,000. That means taxpayers are actually paying for union efforts to shake down taxpayers for ever higher salaries and benefits for government workers.

Average controller compensation for the 20,000 or so federal air traffic controllers totaled $166,000 in 2006 and has been forecast to rise towards $200,000 in the next five years, according to a study by the Heritage Foundation.

By contrast, the average American makes $50,000 and the average DOT employee makes $70,000.

It's bad enough that taxpayers are on the hook for a union whose interests are in opposition to their own, but even the workers aren't getting much of value from this taxpayer-paid union representation, either.

"At least 50% of the people you work with aren't worth what they are paid either. ... Incentive and recognition aren't the strong points," wrote one FAA employee, describing his work on the jobs bulletin board

"People make a good deal of money, yet are often whining about not making more. Most of the whining I overheard came from people making over 90K a year," wrote another.

"The employees that don't pull their own weight are not disciplined because of PASS (the union)," said another.

"Brown noses advance well. You have to brag on yourself exceeding in all areas for performance bonus which some find fun since they sit around on smoke break 1/4 of day, allowing co-workers to carry load," said another.

It underlines that value for the taxpayer isn't the idea here. Political influence is.

"(W)e are one of the strongest and most influential labor unions in the federal sector," bragged Natca President Paul Rinaldi, in a statement on the union's website.



Charity Begins With Wealth Creation

 John Stossel

Charity -- helping people who have trouble helping themselves -- is a good thing two times over. It's good for the beneficiary and good for the donor, too. Stephen Post's fine book, "The Hidden Gifts of Helping," reveals that 76 percent of Americans say that helping others is what makes them most happy. Giving money makes us feel good, and helping face-to-face is even better. People say it makes them feel physically healthier. They sleep better.
Private charity is unquestioningly better than government efforts to help people. Government squanders money. Charities sometime squander money, too, but they usually don't.

Proof of the superiority of private over government efforts is everywhere. Catholic charities do a better job educating children than government -- for much less money. New York City's government left Central Park a dangerous mess. Then a private charity rescued it. But while charity is important, let's not overlook something more important: Before we can help anyone, we first need something to give. Production precedes donation. Advocates of big government forget this.

We can't give unless we (or someone) first creates. Yet wealth creators are encouraged to feel guilt. "Bill Gates, or any billionaire, for that matter," Yaron Brook, author of "Free Market Revolution" and president of the Ayn Rand Institute, said on my TV show, "how did they become a billionaire? By creating a product or great service that benefits everybody. And we know it benefits us because we pay for it. We pay less than what it's worth to us. That's why we trade -- we get more value than what we give up. So, our lives are better off. Bill Gates improved hundreds of millions of lives around the world. That's how he became a billionaire."

Gates walks in the footprints of earlier creators, like John D. Rockefeller, who got rich by lowering the price of oil products, and Cornelius Vanderbilt, who did the same for transportation. The clueless media called them robber barons, but they were neither robbers nor barons.

They and other creators didn't just give us products to improve our lives, they also employed people. That's charity that keeps on giving, because employees keep working and keep supporting their families. "That's not charity," Brook said. "(It's) another trade. You pay your employees and get something in return. But the employee is better off, and you are better off.

"And when you start thinking about the multiplier effect, $50 billion for Bill Gates? That's nothing compared to the value he added to the world. That is much greater than the value he'll ever add in any kind of charitable activity." Gates now donates billions and applies his critical thinking skills to charity. He tested ideas in education, like small high schools, and dumped them when they didn't work. Good. But if he reinvested his charity money in Microsoft, might he have helped more people? Maybe.

Brook points out that Gates gets credit for his charity, but little credit for having created wealth. "Quite the contrary," Brook said. "We sent the Justice Department to go after him. He's considered greedy, in spite of all the hundreds of millions of people he's helped, because he benefited at the same time. (When) he shifted to charity, suddenly he's a good guy. My complaint is not that he's doing the charity. It's that we as a society value not the creation, not the building, not the accumulation of wealth. ... What we value is the charity. Yes, it's going to have good impact, but is that what's important? ... Charity is fine, but not the source of virtue. The source of virtue is the creation and the building."

What especially offends Brook, and me, too, is stigmatizing wealth creators. The rich are made to feel guilty about making money. I sometimes attend "lifetime achievement award" ceremonies meant to honor a businessman. Inevitably, his charity work is celebrated much more enthusiastically than his business creation. Sometimes the businessman says he wants to "give back."

Says Brook, "It's wrong for businessmen to feel like they need to 'give back' as if they took something away from anybody."

He's right. They didn't.  If we value benevolence, we must value creation.



The Fed rolls the dice

Robert Samuelson

It was big news last week when the Federal Reserve announced that it wants to maintain its current low-interest rate policy until unemployment, now 7.7 percent, drops to at least 6.5 percent. The Fed was correctly portrayed as favoring job creation over fighting inflation, though it also set an inflation target of 2.5 percent. What was missing from commentary was caution based on history: the Fed has tried this before and failed – with disastrous consequences.

By "this," I mean a twin targeting of unemployment and inflation. In the 1970s, that's what the Fed did. Targets weren't announced but were implicit. The Fed pursed the then-popular goal of "full employment," defined as a 4 percent unemployment rate; annual inflation of 3 percent to 4 percent was deemed acceptable. The result was economic schizophrenia. Episodes of easy credit to cut unemployment spurred inflation, which inspired tighter credit that boosted joblessness. By 1980, inflation was 13 percent and unemployment, 7 percent.

The Fed was in over its head. It didn't know enough to do what it (and many others) thought it could do. Today's problem is similar. Although the Fed has learned much since the 1970s – including the importance of low inflation – its economic understanding and powers are still limited. It can't predictably hit a given mix of unemployment and inflation. Striving to do so risks dangerous side effects, including a future financial crisis.

For proof of the Fed's limits, look to the Fed itself. Since the 2008-09 financial crisis, which the Fed didn't anticipate or prevent, it has repeatedly miscalculated. It's made heroic efforts to revive the economy, including keeping short-term interest rates near zero since late 2008 and pumping out more than $2 trillion by buying mortgage bonds and U.S. Treasury securities. But as Chairman Ben Bernanke conceded last week, the Fed has consistently overestimated the recovery's strength. Even if the Fed's policies were right, their impact has been exaggerated.

Throwing money at the economy has produced only modest gains. The money paid out to buy bonds has aimed, through reinvestment in the stock and bond markets, to boost stock prices and lower interest rates on other bonds. These changes are intended to stimulate spending. Many economists agree that more can be done. "Is the Fed running out of steam? To some extent," says Mark Zandi of Moody's Analytics. "But interest rates on 30-year fixed mortgages are 3.35 percent. They could be lower."

What might doom the Fed's ambitions?

One threat is irrelevancy. Credit is arguably so easy that the Fed can't do much more. Psychology counts. "What I see among small- and medium-sized businesses is rampant pessimism," says economist Allan Meltzer of Carnegie Mellon University. "With $1.5 trillion of excess bank reserves, it's hard to argue that there's a shortage of loanable funds." Fears about the "fiscal cliff" – all the tax increases and spending cuts scheduled for early 2013 – amplify this point....

More here



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


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)


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Politics without Foundations

“Why,” Beverly Gage and Steven Hayward ask, “is there no liberal Ayn Rand?” Arguably, there are several: Charles Dickens, George Bernard Shaw, John dos Passos, and John Steinbeck—though none inspires the devotion that Rand’s followers feel for her. But their real question isn’t about literature. It’s about philosophy. The conservative movement rests on a series of great thinkers: Aristotle, Aquinas, Locke, Burke, Mill, Hayek, von Mises, etc. Where are the intellectual foundations of the Left?

Gage herself provides an answer:
Once upon a time, the Old Left had “movement culture” par excellence: to be considered a serious activist, you had to read Marx and Lenin until your eyes bled. For better or worse, that never resulted in much electoral power (nor was it intended to) and within a few decades became the hallmark of pedantry rater than intellectual vitality.

The New Left reinvented that heritage in the 1960s. Instead of (or in addition to) Marx and Lenin, activists began to read Herbert Marcuse, C. Wright Mills, and Saul Alinsky. As new, more particular movements developed, the reading list grew to include feminists, African-Americans, and other traditionally excluded groups. This vastly enhanced the range of voices in the public sphere—one of the truly great revolutions in American intellectual politics. But it did little to create a single coherent language through which to maintain common cause. Instead, the left ended up with multiple “movement cultures,” most of them more focused on issue-oriented activism than on a common set of ideas.
There is an intellectual tradition behind the contemporary Left, stretching back to Plato’s Republic and including Hegel, Marx, Lenin, Gramsci, Marcuse, Alinsky, etc. But it’s a deeply totalitarian tradition. It’s the political philosophy that dares not speak its name in an election season, for it would garner few votes, and for good reason.

The real intellectual vacuum underlies not the Left as such but people who style themselves liberals, but not socialists—i.e., I’m guessing, most Democrats. Where are their intellectual roots?

Hayward points out that there are some:
Even leaving aside the popularity of fevered figures such as Noam Chomsky, one can point to a number of serious thinkers on the Left such as Michael Walzer, or John Rawls and his acolytes, or Rawls’ thoughtful critics on the Left such as Michael Sandel.  However, the high degree of abstraction of these thinkers—their palpable distance from the real political and cultural debates of our time—is a reflection of the attenuation of contemporary liberalism.

He’s right about the attenuation, but wrong, I think, about the reason. It’s not just that these thinkers are highly abstract; so are Plato and Aristotle. It’s not that they don’t take part in contemporary debates; neither did Aquinas and Hegel. It’s that they don’t tap into anything deep or abiding about the human condition.

For about a decade I team-taught a course on Contemporary Moral Problems with a prominent philosopher of language. He argued the liberal side of each issue; I argued the conservative side. I had no shortage of philosophical material on which to rely. He and I both assumed, since liberalism is supposedly the position that informed, intelligent people occupy, that there were similar philosophical foundations for liberalism. We were both astounded that there were not. For someone who seeks to be a liberal, but not a totalitarian, there is Rousseau, on one interpretation of his thought. And that’s about it.

Of course, there are people trying to provide such intellectual foundations. But we were startled at how thin their theoretical constructs really are. Any competent philosopher can think of a dozen serious objections to Rawls before breakfast, even on hearing his views for the first time:

We base our conception of justice on what people would do if in some hypothetical situation satisfying certain constraints? Really? The actual circumstance, the actual history, what people actually want and need—these don’t matter at all? Why that hypothetical situation, anyway? Why those constraints? Would people really reach agreement? Would they even individually come to any “reflective equilibrium” at all? And why would people choose those principles of justice? Is there actually any research indicating that people would choose those principles? People would divide liberties into basic ones, which matter, and others, which don’t? Everything in the end rests on the welfare of the least advantaged in society? Who’s that? Mental patients and prisoners, probably. So, we’re to judge a society solely on how it treats its mental patients and prisoners? And the welfare of everyone else in society ought to be sacrificed to improve their lot even a tiny bit? Why think, moreover, that liberalism maximizes the welfare of the least advantaged?

Rawls speaks as if well-being is static, as if we can speak simply of what happens at some equilibrium state without worrying about dynamic aspects of the economy or of a person’s life trajectory. But that leads him to confuse well-being at a moment with well-being over a life. An extensive welfare state might maximize the well-being of the least advantaged at the lowest points of their life trajectories without thereby maximizing their long-term well-being. In fact, preventing people from experiencing real lows might undermine their well-being as measured over a life.

I don’t mean to pick on Rawls especially; the same is true of other liberal theorists. Their theoretical constructs don’t connect with deep-seated features of human nature or of human societies. Their theoretical assumptions seem arbitrary and open to overwhelming objections.

That’s why most liberals can’t conduct political discussions at a very high level. They have no one to read who can give them an intellectual foundation for their political views. They therefore have no way to justify their claims that taxes on the wealthy are too low, or that health care, or contraceptives, or anything else ought to be provided as a matter of right, or that our current welfare system is too stingy, etc. Still less do they have any theoretical basis on which rest foreign policy decisions.



Plenty of racism aimed at Tim Scott

As I figured, the appointment of Rep. Tim Scott to fill departing South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint's seat has caused some liberals to become a tad unhinged.

Enter Adolph L. Reed Jr., a political science professor at the University of Pennsylvania. And the editors of the op-ed page at the New York Times, which ran a Reed piece about Scott that was about as close to an ad hominem attack as they come.

To Reed's credit, he didn't resort to the typical language liberals have come to love -- Uncle Tom, sellout, Sambo, handkerchief head -- when describing black conservatives and Republicans (Scott is both). But he did call Scott a "cynical token."

In Reedworld -- and the world of liberals, black and white -- all black Republicans these days are "tokens." And I'm not misquoting the man.

"... (M)odern black Republicans have been more tokens than signs of progress," Reed wrote.

I'm assuming Reed meant black Republicans that have been either elected or appointed to public office. That's where he made his first mistake.

Does Reed seriously believe that rank-and-file black Republicans, those that joined the party because they find it more to their liking than the Democratic Party, are tokens too? Did Reed even talk to any rank-and-file black Republicans before writing his piece?

I suspect not, because I have a hunch that Reed doesn't even know any black Republicans. He hasn't a clue about why some blacks would want to join a "racist" party.

Reed didn't come out and call the Republican Party racist, but he sure as heck strongly hinted at it, with this sentence:

"I suspect that appointments like Mr. Scott's are directed less at blacks -- whom they know they aren't going to win in any significant numbers -- than at whites who are inclined to vote Republican but don't want to have to think of themselves, or be thought of by others, as racist."

And I suspect that Reed is totally unaware that Republicans -- white, black, Asian, Latino -- don't think of themselves as any more racist than Democrats think of themselves as racist.

Here's Reed's real problem with Scott's appointment: It has nothing to do with "cynical tokenism." It has more to do with the fact that such appointments show Democrats to be the lying liars they are when they claim the Republican Party is racist.

"All four black Republicans who have served in the House since the Reagan era -- Gary A. Franks in Connecticut, J.C. Watts Jr. in Oklahoma, Allen B. West in Florida and Mr. Scott -- were elected from majority-white districts," Reed wrote, completely unaware of the foot he was about to shove in his mouth or that he was about to tear to shreds his own claim about Republican "racism."

Just who are the real racists here, Mr. Reed? White Republican voters who don't hesitate to vote for a black candidate? Those white Republicans Reed was so quick to dismiss as racist clearly looked at the qualifications of a Gary Franks, a J.C. Watts, an Allen West and a Tim Scott and voted accordingly.

Black Democrats, on the other hand, rarely elect nonblacks to the House of Representatives from predominantly black districts. And white Democratic voters, as National Journal's Josh Kraushaar observed after the 2010 election, had proven less likely than white Republican voters to nominate and elect blacks and Hispanics in majority-white districts and states.

Here's Reed's second problem with Scott: The new senator from South Carolina doesn't think like Reed does.

"(H)is politics," Reed wrote of Scott, "are utterly at odds with the preferences of most black Americans. Mr. Scott has been staunchly anti-tax, anti-union and anti-abortion."

Only in Reedworld is support for abortion a "black thang." Only in Reedworld are all blacks supposed to think alike.



A libertarian case for having more kids

My wife and I loved the two kids we had already, but they were a ton of work! Diapers, feedings, play dates, school, homework, Cub Scouts, soccer, ballet, etc., etc. Where would we find the time? Would we need a bigger house? Could we ever afford to go on vacation again?

A few weeks later, I spotted a book title that piqued my interest: "Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids," by George Mason University economic professor Bryan Caplan. Two-hundred and forty pages of shared reading later, and my wife was on the phone with her doctor to make No. 3 possible.

Caplan's case basically boils down to this: Too many Americans are reluctant to have more children because we overestimate the resources (time/money/effort) it takes to raise a happy, well-adjusted child.

Those vocabulary flashcards? Not worth it. Your son hates piano lessons? Don't put yourself through the pain of forcing him to go. You don't have time to cook dinner? Get takeout. And perhaps most subversively, if you need a few minutes to compose yourself, don't be afraid to let Cookie Monster babysit your kids for half an hour.

Its scary advice for many parents to hear, but Caplan has reams of scientific studies to back it up. "Adoption and twin research provides strong evidence that parents barely affect their children's prospects," Caplan writes.

For example, one paper he cites shows that while parents can have a large impact on a 2-year-old's vocabulary, by the age of 12, all that intensive training does not significantly separate them from their uncoached peers. "Nature, not nurture, explains most family resemblance, so parents can safely cut themselves a lot of additional slack."

Caplan's advice is not for everybody. If you love travel or live in an expensive city, a bigger family is probably not for you. Caplan's parenting advice probably won't work for parents with controlling personalities either. If you think you can mold your children in your own image, then fewer kids is probably best for you.

"Show more modesty and get more happiness," Caplan writes. "You can have a better life and a bigger family if you admit that your kids' future is not in your hands."

Not that Caplan advises parents to let their kids do whatever they want. Quite the opposite. Caplan stresses that clear and consistent discipline is not only necessary for your child's well-being, but for any parent's sanity, as well. An unruly household where a pack of kids ignores their parents would drive anyone crazy.

Most pro-natalist books make the case that having more children is good for all of humanity. And "Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids" does have one such chapter. But, as a libertarian, Caplan's book does not contain any laundry list of government programs designed to make bigger families more common.

Instead, Caplan's book is about how parents can learn to enjoy parenting more. "The main lesson," Caplan writes, "is that parenting is about the journey, not the destination."



Maybe you never met Bork, but he made your life better

Diana Furchtgott-Roth

One measure of a person's merit is how much he helps ordinary people whom he's never met, and people far junior. By that standard, and by many other standards, Judge Robert Bork, a former Marine who died on Dec. 19 at the age of 85, was a man of great merit.

Newspaper stories about Bork center on his contentious congressional hearing, where senators failed to confirm him as a Supreme Court justice.

But most fail to mention that antitrust, the law of competitive marketplaces, is the first area where Bork left his mark. In the 1950s, antitrust law was a sleepy domain filled with rigid rules and nonsensical results. Company A could not acquire Company B because of the blind application of a formula. Often, the companies being shut out would be small businesses run by ordinary people simply trying to survive.

Bork revolutionized antitrust law. He was one of the first to look at the benefits to consumers from changes in corporate structures. He used economic tools to evaluate costs and benefits. As a result, countless millions of Americans and American businesses benefited from a more enlightened approach to antitrust law.

Bork did not meet these ordinary American consumers or businesses. We did not appear in his classrooms or courtrooms. We never knew we owed him a debt of gratitude. And Bork would never have thought that anyone owed him a word of thanks.

He did all of this not through obscure legal writings, but through clear and elegant prose that even ordinary Americans could have read and understood if they had been so inclined.

It would have been understandable if Bork had little time for mere mortals. But, as his colleague for eight years at the American Enterprise Institute, and six years at the Hudson Institute, I can say definitively that this was not so.

At AEI in the 1990s, Bork regularly participated in the weekly Friday Forums, where staff would present their research to their colleagues for discussion and critique. Bork was an enthusiastic participant, sitting at a table with the late philosopher Irving Kristol, theologian Michael Novak, and economists Allan Meltzer and Irwin Stelzer, and also talking to more junior staff, such as myself.

One of Bork's interns at Hudson, Arthur Ewenczyk, said, "When the judge heard I never had a martini, he took it upon himself to introduce me to not one but three of D.C.'s best-mixed martinis."

Ewenczyk, now a senior at Yale Law School, continued, "He took my fellow intern and me out to lunch at some of D.C.'s finest dining establishments every week when we worked for him so that we would learn to enjoy the finer things in life."

Ewenczyk was not alone. Bork loved interacting with young people. He had trouble getting out in his last years, but one day the staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee came to visit, bringing copies of his books for autographs and innumerable questions. They had a spirited conversation and stayed for dinner.

Bork remained a lifelong supporter of the Marines. Every year he attended the annual dinner of the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society, even when he was in a wheelchair. On Saturday, he was laid to rest by his fellow Marines.

Marines, consumers, people great and small -- we all have been helped by Judge Bork. Most of us never knew it, much less thanked him. He made life better for ordinary people perfect strangers, not through any moral calculus, but from a moral compass that needed no calculation. America is a better nation for having had Robert Bork, and our loss is great.




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


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)


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A party that doesn't think with its skin

by Jeff Jacoby

SOUTH CAROLINA'S conservative Republican governor, Nikki Haley, is the daughter of Sikh immigrants from Punjab. US Representative Tim Scott of Charleston, a Tea Party hero who was raised in poverty by a divorced single mother, is South Carolina's first black Republican lawmaker in more than a century. To anyone who shares the ideals that animate modern conservatism – limited government, economic liberty, color-blind equality – it stands to reason that Haley and Scott are conservatives. And their Republican affiliation should surprise no one familiar with the GOP's long history as the party of minority civil rights.

But many people aren't familiar with that history. So relentlessly have liberal propagandists played the race card over the years that virtually anything conservatives or Republicans do – from opposing Obamacare to tweaking the president's fondness for golf -- somehow gets twisted into proof of racial malice. So when Haley announced last week that she would appoint Scott to the US Senate seat being vacated by Jim DeMint, who is leaving to take a job at the Heritage Foundation, I indulged in a bit of preemptive snark.

"An Indian-American governor appoints an African-American to the US Senate," I posted on Twitter. "Man, that lily-white GOP racism never ends, does it?"

On being sworn in, Scott will become the Senate's only sitting black member and the first from the South since the 1880s. Indeed he'll be just the seventh black senator in the nation's history; three of the others, including Edward Brooke of Massachusetts, were also Republican. Haley, meanwhile, is one of only two Indian-Americans ever elected governor (the other is Louisiana's Bobby Jindal, a fellow Republican). For anyone who esteems racial and ethnic diversity, this has to be a good-news story. Could even the most determined racial McCarthyists find reasons to decry Scott's appointment?

Of course they could.

"Tokens. That's all they are," one Twitter user promptly replied to my tweet. Remarked another: "The man's race may be inconvenient for the Repubs, but he's a teabagger like them so they'll ignore it." Twitter users elsewhere smeared Scott as an "Uncle Tom" and a "house Negro."

In fairness, on Twitter anyone can pop off about anything. What about more serious venues?

Well, the NAACP – which used to be a serious organization – promptly let it be known that while it was glad to see "more integration" in Congress, it disliked Scott's "record of opposition to civil rights protection and advancing those real issues of concern of the … African-American community." Does the NAACP really believe that Johnson opposes black civil rights? A ludicrous canard. Then again, so was its absurd resolution two years ago denouncing the Tea Party movement as a platform for "anti-Semites, racists and bigots."

Writing Wednesday in The New York Times, University of Pennsylvania political scientist Adolph Reed Jr. was in a similar froth, slamming Scott because he doesn't think with his skin. "His politics, like those of the archconservative Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas, are utterly at odds with the preferences of most black Americans." Scott has no legitimate connection to "mainstream black politics," Reed scoffed. He's just another "cynical token" – one more black Republican elected to Congress from a majority-white district.

It's an old story by now, this venomous lashing-out at blacks and other minorities who embrace conservative or Republican values. It especially infuriates the Democratic left to see the enthusiasm black conservatives inspire among Republicans. Far from celebrating the fact that minorities can demonstrate appeal across the political spectrum, the left whips out the race card. The rise of black Republican leaders, they say, is just a thin disguise for GOP racism. Yet if Republicans oppose a black Democratic leader, they call that racism too.

Perhaps historical guilt feelings explain this reflexive racial demagoguery. For a very long time the Democratic Party was a bulwark of American racism – it was the party that defended slavery; that fought the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments; that founded the Ku Klux Klan; that enacted Jim Crow segregation; that opposed anti-lynching laws. Could it be the psychological weight of such a record that leads so many Democrats and their allies today to promiscuously impute racism to their political opponents? Above all, to their black political opponents?

"I'm a black Republican," Scott says serenely . "Some people think of that as zany – that a black person would be a conservative. But to me what is zany is any person – black, white, red, brown or yellow – not being a conservative." If the accusation is that he doesn't think with his skin, Scott seems happy to plead guilty as charged.



Questions the Press Doesn't Ask

 Mona Charen

Merry Christmas to the Fourth Estate! Hope you've enjoyed your goose or turkey or whatever your family tradition includes (latkes for those who are Jewish). When you return to work, there are a few loose ends on which you might want to follow up.
"Follow up." It's a term that has gone out of style in the age of Obama. You members of the press have become remarkably uncurious since he's been in the White House. A blanket of benevolent uncuriousness smothers news about Obama administration wrongdoing.

The Secretary of State, who took "full responsibility" for the Benghazi debacle, has not once been publicly questioned about it. Called to testify before a House committee this week, she pleaded illness -- a fall resulting in a concussion. She says she will testify in January. Perhaps members of Congress will ask what the press has not. Who made the decision to deny the requested additional security to our diplomats? Where is a copy of the order President Obama says he issued requiring that "everything possible" be done to save our personnel who were under attack? (Former Assistant Secretary of Defense Bing West notes that such orders are always written down.) Were Navy seals stationed in Benghazi told to "stand down" rather than render assistance? Who told Susan Rice to say that the attack grew out of a protest, when there was no protest?

Speaking of that non-existent protest, isn't anyone even a little uncomfortable at the spectacle of the United States government arresting a guy for making a video (however "crude and offensive")? On orders of this administration, an FBI team descended upon and locked up Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. He may be a petty criminal and an idiot, but that's not the point. Aren't members of press sensitive about infringements of the First Amendment? Besides, what sort of message does it send to extremists around the globe when the U.S. cracks down on expressions of "blasphemy" toward Mohammed? Won't they congratulate themselves on intimidating us?

You may want to ask. Just saying.

Oh, and here's something else you forgot to be inquisitive about. An unpaid intern working in the office of Democratic New Jersey Senator Robert Menendez (who was reelected on Nov. 6) was arrested on Dec. 6. It seems the 18-year-old illegal immigrant from Peru (who helped the senator on immigration issues!) was a registered sex offender. ICE knew about him, but he was repeatedly told by higher ups at DHS, according to a government source, to delay the arrest until after the election. If true, that's a remarkable politicization of law enforcement. So far, one "no comment" from a government official has sufficed to quiet your inquiries.

During the campaign (we learned after the election), the Obama administration undertook to devise guidelines for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles or drones. "There was a concern that the levers might no longer be in our hands," an official told The New York Times. In other words, a Republican president would need guidelines for the use of Hellfire missiles, but with President Obama in the White House, safeguards are unnecessary. His unerring judgment is all that's required. The president has presided over the deaths of an estimated 2,500 individuals -- including some American citizens -- through the drone program of targeted assassinations. Isn't the press interested in what sort of guidelines the administration recommends imposing on its successor? On itself? Oh, wait, with the election safely past, the guidelines are on hold.

Finally, this isn't a scandal, an abuse of power, or an example of hypocrisy, but it's such a blatant display of moral confusion that it begs for questioning. The Syrian dictator Bashar Assad, (about whom the next secretary of state was so wrong), has killed roughly 25,000 civilians and uprooted 1.2 million more. Human Rights Watch reported that there are 27 known torture centers run by the Syrian military. Yet the president has said that only the use of chemical weapons represents a "red line" that Syria must not cross. "If you make the tragic mistake of using these weapons," he warned earlier this month, "there will be consequences and you will be held accountable." Question: Doesn't that mean that Assad will not be held accountable for the rest? What is the logic of that?

You might ask. If it's not too much trouble.



Christmas in an Anti-Christian Age

Pat Buchanan

In a recent issue of New Oxford Review, Andrew Seddon ("The New Atheism: All the Rage") describes a "Reason Rally" in Washington, D.C., a "coming out" event sponsored by atheist groups. Among the speakers was Oxford biologist Richard Dawkins, author of "The God Delusion," who claims that "faith is an evil precisely because it requires no justification and brooks no argument."

Christians have been infected by a "God virus," says Dawkins. They are no longer rational beings. Atheists should treat them with derisory contempt. "Mock Them!" Dawkins shouted. "Ridicule them! In public!"

In "The End of Faith," atheist Sam Harris wrote that "some propositions are so dangerous that it may even be ethical to kill people."

"Since the New Atheists believe that religion is evil," notes Seddon, "that it 'poisons everything,' in (Christopher) Hitchens' words -- it doesn't take much effort to see that Harris is referring to religions and the people who follow them."

Now since atheists are still badly outnumbered in America and less well-armed than the God-and-Country boys, and atheists believe this is the only life they have, atheist suggestions to "kill people" of Christian belief is probably a threat Christians need not take too seriously.

With reference to Dawkins' view that the Christian faith "requires no justification and brooks no argument," Seddon makes a salient point.

While undeniable that Christianity entails a belief in the supernatural, the miraculous -- God became man that first Christmas, Christ raised people from the dead, rose himself on the first Easter Sunday and ascended into heaven 40 days later -- consider what atheists believe.

They believe that something came out of nothing, that reason came from irrationality, that a complex universe and natural order came out of randomness and chaos, that consciousness came from non-consciousness and that life emerged from non-life.

This is a bridge too far for the Christian for whom faith and reason tell him that for all of this to have been created from nothing is absurd; it presupposes a Creator.

Atheists believe, Seddon writes, that "a multiverse (for which there is no experimental or observational evidence) containing an inconceivably large number of universes spontaneously created itself."

Yet, Hitchens insists, "our belief is not a belief."

Nonsense. Atheism requires a belief in the unbelievable.

Christians believe Christ could raise people from the dead because he is God. That is faith. Atheists believe life came out of non-life. That, too, is faith. They believe in what their god, science, cannot demonstrate, replicate or prove. They believe in miracles but cannot identify, produce or describe the miracle worker.

At Christmas, pray for Hitchens, Harris, Dawkins and the other lost souls at that Reason Rally.


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



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


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)


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Obama Saves Earth From Apocalypse: What's Next?

As we celebrate our narrow escape from the Mayan-Republican Apocalypse of December 21, 2012, the American media is living up to its reputation as the people's fearless truth-teller, by correctly attributing our miraculous collective salvation to Barack Obama. The consensus among the media experts and celebrities can be best expressed by this unbiased quote from CNN: "If you don't think Obama is god, you're just stupid."

According to an ancient prophecy, the Mayan calendar would end on 12/21/2012 with a big comet (or other large-caliber assault weapon that the NRA protects from government control) falling off a physical cliff and striking the United States in karmic retaliation for Bush's tax cuts and suppression of undocumented Mayan voters in swing states. Some experts estimated that, in addition to total death and destruction, this could result in the loss of all accrued Social Security benefits and free government-mandated health care, as well as a severe climate change as the planet would burn to a crisp.

As the dreaded date approached, the media downplayed the Doomsday prediction as some authentic New Age gibberish propagated by people using medical marijuana for non-medicinal purposes. Such moral and intellectual guidance helped to stave off panic among the middle class working families, which could lead to a scarcity of wait staff at bistros that media personalities patronize. Privately, however, they realized that the prophecy was true and that we were all doomed.

But, as members of the fourth estate heroically passed their final hours feasting on wine and cheese while cursing people who disagreed with them on Twitter, something wonderful happened: NOTHING! It was like the fiscal cliff negotiations writ large.

Suddenly, as if by magic, all top-shelf, professional, state-accredited journalists across the nation knew the truth: the reason for both nothings were the actions of president Obama.

As skeptics and other racists predictably question Obama's divine intervention, the media's answer to their conspiracy theories is clear: it's December 22nd and we are all here, aren't we? The world, including GM, is still alive - and Bin Laden is still deader than the majority of Chicago voters. What more proof do you need?



Reflection on Unz from a brown man

Razib Khan, a Bangladeshi Muslim by birth, reflects on the “Asian quota” in Ivy League admissions revealed by the surveys of Ron Unz. He is impressed by how much important knowledge in America is unspoken, or at least not public

I commend you to read Austin Bramwell’s perspective in the Top of the Class, where he outlines exactly how elite prep schools cooperate with the admissions offices of Ivy League universities to perpetuate the pipeline which maintains the generations of the customary American gentry (of which he is a member).

Institutions like Harvard exist to shape the nature of the American ruling class. It makes sense that they would be keen toward particular demographic considerations. I am personally not particularly pleased as the prospect of racial quotas, but then again my image of an “elite university” is that it should be elite in scholarly terms, rather than as a finishing school for the next generation of America’s rulers (and I have no interest in the types of demographic diversity which are of concern for most). But I am not the dictator of this world, and I am rather confident that no matter what the Supreme Court rules in the near future, a de facto quota system will continue, with some marginal modifications, at private universities for the indefinite future. The American ruling class, whether it be intellectuals, politicians, or corporate executives, favors some form of affirmative action and diversity, and I am convinced that they will get their way, no matter legal obstacles or populist sentiments.

Reality is what it is, and it is on the matter of transparency, and explicit comprehension, where I think we need to make our stand. There are many people who have long been aware of the “Asian quota,” or the fact that “holistic admissions” serve to allow particular universities to modulate their demographic outcomes appropriately. But not everyone is aware of this. I am thinking, for example, of a friend who was raised by a single mother. He happens to be 1/4 Asian in ancestry, and when applying to elite private universities he made sure to put “Asian” as his race, under the false assumption that being a minority would aid his chances of admission. Raised by a white single mother he was not in a milieu where the “real rules” on what counts, and doesn’t count, as a minority, were understood. We live in a system where the child of Korean shopkeepers is not an underrepresented minority, while the child of a Venezuelan doctor most certainly is.

Similarly, when elites talk about “diversity,” it is implicitly clear that this alludes to very particular and specific demographic diversities. Race, sex, and the reality of some ancestry derived from Latin America most certainly. Our modern elites may give a rhetorical nod to socioeconomic diversity, but there will never be any substantive action in this direction which might jeopardize the chances of their own children ascending the ladders of power. The extant scholarship on elite university admissions suggests that non-Hispanic whites who are below the middle class are extremely underrepresented at elite private institutions, but there is no prospect to my knowledge that this deficit in the texture of the future ruling classes will be addressed. This is just understood by all who count, and requires no great public discussion.

Success in life in the United States today demands that you understand the implicit and subtextual filaments which thread their way through the American cultural landscape. My daughter is an Asian American because her father is an Asian American (thanks to the reclassification of South Asians as Asian Americans in 1980). But the reality is that her physical appearance strongly favors her Northern European heritage. With that in mind we quite consciously gave her a series of names which allowed her own ethnic identity to be optional and situational. As I have no great emotional interest or preoccupation with collective identities I feel no pang of guilt or regret about this.

The world is a bureaucratic machine, and there are those born who understand that the machine must be manipulated, and those who allow themselves to be tossed about by its machinations. If you don’t have a cynicism and mercenary attitude toward the machine, you will be consumed by it. The children of the American elite take the machinery for granted by dint of the implicit cultural wisdom they receive with their mother’s milk. The machine will always load the die so as to favor then. Those who are outside can only even the odds through information, and being better than those who are to the American manor born.



CHRISTMAS at the Gas Station

A short story that tells a great truth

The old man sat in his gas station on a cold Christmas Eve. He hadn't been anywhere in years since his wife had passed away. It was just another day to him. He didn't hate Christmas, just couldn't find a reason to celebrate. He was sitting there looking at the snow that had been falling for the last hour and wondering what it was all about when the door opened and a homeless man stepped through.

Instead of throwing the man out, Old George as he was known by his customers, told the man to come and sit by the heater and warm up. "Thank you, but I don't mean to intrude," said the stranger. "I see you're busy, I'll just go."

"Not without something hot in your belly." George said.

He turned and opened a wide mouth Thermos and handed it to the stranger. "It ain't much, but it's hot and tasty. Stew ... Made it myself. When you're done, there's coffee and it's fresh."

Just at that moment he heard the "ding" of the driveway bell. "Excuse me, be right back," George said. There in the driveway was an old '53 Chevy. Steam was rolling out of the front.. The driver was panicked. "Mister can you help me!" said the driver, with a deep Spanish accent. "My wife is with child and my car is broken." George opened the hood. It was bad. The block looked cracked from the cold, the car was dead.

"You ain't going in this thing," George said as he turned away.

"But Mister, please help ..." The door of the office closed behind George as he went inside. He went to the office wall and got the keys to his old truck, and went back outside. He walked around the building, opened the garage, started the truck and drove it around to where the couple was waiting. "Here, take my truck," he said. "She ain't the best thing you ever looked at, but she runs real good."

George helped put the woman in the truck and watched as it sped off into the night. He turned and walked back inside the office. "Glad I gave 'em the truck, their tires were shot too. That 'ol truck has brand new ." George thought he was talking to the stranger, but the man had gone. The Thermos was on the desk, empty, with a used coffee cup beside it. "Well, at least he got something in his belly," George thought.

George went back outside to see if the old Chevy would start. It cranked slowly, but it started. He pulled it into the garage where the truck had been. He thought he would tinker with it for something to do. Christmas Eve meant no customers. He discovered the the block hadn't cracked, it was just the bottom hose on the radiator. "Well, shoot, I can fix this," he said to himself. So he put a new one on.

"Those tires ain't gonna get 'em through the winter either." He took the snow treads off of his wife's old Lincoln. They were like new and he wasn't going to drive the car anyway.

As he was working, he heard shots being fired. He ran outside and beside a police car an officer lay on the cold ground. Bleeding from the left shoulder, the officer moaned, "Please help me."

George helped the officer inside as he remembered the training he had received in the Army as a medic. He knew the wound needed attention. "Pressure to stop the bleeding," he thought. The uniform company had been there that morning and had left clean shop towels. He used those and duct tape to bind the wound. "Hey, they say duct tape can fix anythin'," he said, trying to make the policeman feel at ease.

"Something for pain," George thought. All he had was the pills he used for his back. "These ought to work." He put some water in a cup and gave the policeman the pills. "You hang in there, I'm going to get you an ambulance."

The phone was dead. "Maybe I can get one of your buddies on that there talk box out in your car." He went out only to find that a bullet had gone into the dashboard destroying the two way radio.

He went back in to find the policeman sitting up. "Thanks," said the officer. "You could have left me there. The guy that shot me is still in the area."

George sat down beside him, "I would never leave an injured man in the Army and I ain't gonna leave you." George pulled back the bandage to check for bleeding. "Looks worse than what it is. Bullet passed right through 'ya. Good thing it missed the important stuff though. I think with time your gonna be right as rain."

George got up and poured a cup of coffee. "How do you take it?" he asked.

"None for me," said the officer..

"Oh, yer gonna drink this. Best in the city. Too bad I ain't got no donuts." The officer laughed and winced at the same time.

The front door of the office flew open. In burst a young man with a gun. "Give me all your cash! Do it now!" the young man yelled. His hand was shaking and George could tell that he had never done anything like this before.

"That's the guy that shot me!" exclaimed the officer.

"Son, why are you doing this?" asked George, "You need to put the cannon away. Somebody else might get hurt."

The young man was confused. "Shut up old man, or I'll shoot you, too. Now give me the cash!"

The cop was reaching for his gun. "Put that thing away," George said to the cop, "we got one too many in here now."

He turned his attention to the young man. "Son, it's Christmas Eve. If you need money, well then, here. It ain't much but it's all I got. Now put that pea shooter away."

George pulled $150 out of his pocket and handed it to the young man, reaching for the barrel of the gun at the same time. The young man released his grip on the gun, fell to his knees and began to cry. "I'm not very good at this am I? All I wanted was to buy something for my wife and son," he went on. "I've lost my job, my rent is due, my car got repossessed last week."

George handed the gun to the cop. "Son, we all get in a bit of squeeze now and then. The road gets hard sometimes, but we make it through the best we can."

He got the young man to his feet, and sat him down on a chair across from the cop. "Sometimes we do stupid things." George handed the young man a cup of coffee. "Bein' stupid is one of the things that makes us human. Comin' in here with a gun ain't the answer. Now sit there and get warm and we'll sort this thing out."

The young man had stopped crying. He looked over to the cop. "Sorry I shot you. It just went off. I'm sorry officer."

"Shut up and drink your coffee " the cop said.

George could hear the sounds of sirens outside. A police car and an ambulance skidded to a halt. Two cops came through the door, guns drawn. "Chuck! You ok?" one of the cops asked the wounded officer.

"Not bad for a guy who took a bullet. How did you find me?"

"GPS locator in the car. Best thing since sliced bread. Who did this?" the other cop asked as he approached the young man.

Chuck answered him, "I don't know. The guy ran off into the dark. Just dropped his gun and ran."

George and the young man both looked puzzled at each other.

"That guy work here?" the wounded cop continued.

"Yep," George said, "just hired him this morning. Boy lost his job."

The paramedics came in and loaded Chuck onto the stretcher. The young man leaned over the wounded cop and whispered, "Why?"

Chuck just said, "Merry Christmas boy ... and you too, George, and thanks for everything."

"Well, looks like you got one doozy of a break there. That ought to solve some of your problems."

George went into the back room and came out with a box. He pulled out a ring box. "Here you go, something for the little woman. I don't think Martha would mind. She said it would come in handy some day."

The young man looked inside to see the biggest diamond ring he ever saw. "I can't take this," said the young man. "It means something to you."

"And now it means something to you," replied George. "I got my memories. That's all I need."

George reached into the box again. An airplane, a car and a truck appeared next. They were toys that the oil company had left for him to sell. "Here's something for that little man of yours."

The young man began to cry again as he handed back the $150 that the old man had handed him earlier.

"And what are you supposed to buy Christmas dinner with? You keep that too," George said. "Now git home to your family."

The young man turned with tears streaming down his face. "I'll be here in the morning for work, if that job offer is still good."

"Nope. I'm closed Christmas day," George said. "See ya the day after."

George turned around to find that the stranger had returned. "Where'd you come from? I thought you left?"

"I have been here. I have always been here," said the stranger. "You say you don't celebrate Christmas. Why?"

"Well, after my wife passed away, I just couldn't see what all the bother was. Puttin' up a tree and all seemed a waste of a good pine tree. Bakin' cookies like I used to with Martha just wasn't the same by myself and besides I was gettin' a little chubby."

The stranger put his hand on George's shoulder. "But you do celebrate the holiday, George. You gave me food and drink and warmed me when I was cold and hungry. The woman with child will bear a son and he will become a great doctor.

The policeman you helped will go on to save 19 people from being killed by terrorists. The young man who tried to rob you will make you a rich man and not take any for himself. "That is the spirit of the season and you keep it as good as any man."

George was taken aback by all this stranger had said. "And how do you know all this?" asked the old man.

"Trust me, George. I have the inside track on this sort of thing. And when your days are done you will be with Martha again."

The stranger moved toward the door. "If you will excuse me, George, I have to go now. I have to go home where there is a big celebration planned."

George watched as the old leather jacket and the torn pants that the stranger was wearing turned into a white robe. A golden light began to fill the room.

"You see, George ... it's My birthday. Merry Christmas."

"Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me" -- Matt 25:40.



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


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)