Friday, January 10, 2014

Carthage Must Be Destroyed!

By Rich Kozlovich

In 2013 the United States Congress was criticized for not getting things done. The Congress “only” passed 65 new laws. Of course we have to understand that one year they passed over three hundred new laws.

What is really important to understand is when new laws are passed the baton of power is passed to the permanent bureaucracies, whose function is to make even more laws called – “rules”! In 2013 there was an average of 56 new regulations resulting from each law passed totaling 3659 new laws called – “rules”! That multiplier has been as low as 12 per new law, but that was in 2006 when Congress passed 321 new laws. If you average out the multipliers over the last ten years the average multiplier is 25.36.

So what’s the rest of the story? Last year the states passed over 40,000 new laws. If we make a broad assumption that the average multiplier applies to the states we now have a potential of 1,014,400 new laws called – “rules!” Rules created by unaccountable bureaucrats, with their own agendas and views of reality, and who, generally speaking, went to college and then into government.

During the first five years of the Obama administration regulatory costs increased by $500 billion dollars, “with $112 billion in regulatory compliance costs in 2013 alone, and predicted that the burden would continue to increase this year to as much as $143 billion”.  The federal registry, where all the regulations are listed, contain 80,224 pages this year alone.  It’s estimated that in ten years at the current rate of regulatory growth there will generate approximately 900,000 new pages of regulations, which will be on top of the approximately 800,000 pages of regulations passed in the previous ten years.

All of these regulations do one thing for sure - create jobs – for non-productive bureaucrats.  It took government employees 10.38 billion hours to do “the paperwork for the federal government in 2013, and will take 78,000 full-time employees to complete the additional paperwork.”

We also have to look at who benefits from laws and the regulations they generate.  In this kind of hyper-regulatory, high tax economy many of these laws and regulations are promoted by businesses that want to make it harder for companies that will be, or are, competitors.  As a result “all aspects of business, entrepreneurship degenerates into “bribery and diplomacy.” Instead of focusing on creating value for customers, entrepreneurs spend their time lobbying for favors or to avoid penalties, trying to discern the government’s next move, anticipating or adapting to the newest regulations.”

But this was to be expected from a party that loves big government and “more” laws and regulations - all the better to control our lives.  What about the administrations that have been considered conservative, anti-big government and opposed to all these regulations?  There were more regulations passed during George W. Bush’s administration than any president since Richard Nixon.  Furthermore this idea there is some invisible divide between the left and the so-called right regarding regulations and the promotion of the all powerful state is an illusion:

“The modern regulatory state is a bipartisan enterprise: During the half-century before President Obama's election, the greatest growth in regulation came under Presidents Richard Nixon and George W. Bush.  And the Bush administration set the stage for many of the Obama initiatives that Republicans are now attacking. Dodd-Frank's policy of designating some financial firms as "too big to fail" is a codification of the Paulson-Bernanke bailout approach of 2008. It was the Bush Treasury Department that first proposed a financial consumer-protection agency, and the Bush Environmental Protection Agency that first proposed regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act. The Obama energy rules were authorized — and in some cases, such as the light-bulb ban, required — by a 2007 statute that President Bush vigorously championed.”

What about Richard M. Nixon?  Nixon was a strange man and still an enigma to many, and understandably so, because Nixon was the first to advocate what was called a New Federalism, which would ‘devolve’ power to state and local governments.  But he was the first one to jump on the environmental band wagon promoted by the first Earth Day in 1970.  He believed this was a precursor of public concern and he wanted to benefit from it politically.

Eventually he signed the Clear Air Act, the Clear Water Act the Endangered Species Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act, requiring environmental impact statements for federal projects.

He created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).  All of which create virtual lava flows of scientifically dubious regulations, creating outrageous burdens on the American people, and the American economy.

Furthermore, all these laws and agencies give rise to lawsuits by activists that plague economic development with lawsuits, legal costs, studies and delays.

What is the cost of all these federal regulations to the nation’s people?  One point eight trillion dollars a year!  And I have no idea what kind of costs of all these state laws impose on society.  So what is the solution - at least at the federal level?

No one can fix this piecemeal because it is a foundational issue and until that foundational problem is recognized it will never be solved. So what is that foundational issue? Passage of the 16th and 17th amendments in 1913, which laid the foundation for our doom.

The 16th amendment gave the federal government the right to tax income.  This gave them the right to confiscate an unending amount of society’s money, [called their fair share] and spend it like drunken sailors. That turned the federal government into an insatiable beast that can never be fed to satisfaction, creating debt that is threatening the stability of not only the nation, but the world.

The 17th amendment changed how Senators are chosen. The Founding Fathers were determined to prevent the federal government from becoming an all too powerful entity that was centralized and out of control. In order to do this they created a government that wasn’t supposed to do very much creating a true balance of power between the central government and the state governments. In those days the word ‘state’ didn’t mean province, it meant an independent nation. So the Senators were chosen by the state governments to be ambassadors to the federal government in order to stop power grabbing by the central government.

After passage of the 17th amendment they would be elected by popular vote, exactly what the Founding Fathers wanted to avoid, because that was already what the House of Representatives was for. That amendment destroyed the balance of power, the 10th amendment notwithstanding. As long as the 17th exists the 10th is meaningless, and by misusing the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution the federal government can overturn any and all local authority, and individual rights guaranteed under the Constitution.

“The deterioration of the Constitution’s separation of, and balance of, powers means that regulators and bureaucrats now make most laws……The executive branch increasingly imposes its will: President Obama and his administration repeatedly say they are not going to wait for Congress…...”

What about the Supreme Court?  Don’t they understand how the Commerce Clause is being misused?  Until the Rehnquist court in 1995 SCOTUS never saw a law that exceeded Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause.  In fact, they held the view that no matter how slight the impact might be on commerce it would now be subject to federal control.  If there ever was a system for abuse and tyranny this was it, and now the states were powerless to do anything about it.

Roman Senator Cato the Elder was born in 234 BC and believed that Carthage was too dangerous to be allowed to exist. Therefore he gave speeches ending in the phrase [no matter the topic of the speech] “Carthago delenda est”, “Carthage Must be Destroyed". The 16th and 17th amendments are our modern Carthage – too dangerous to exist.   This is foundational. The only fix is the repeal of the 16th and 17th amendments.   After that - everything else will fall into place.   But first we must be willing to recognize the 16th and 17th amendments really are the enemy - our modern Carthage!



Limbaugh: Obama 'Is an Absolute Economic Idiot'

I think Obama is an empty suit generally  -- but with a nice voice and clever speechwriters.  When he is off the leash he disgraces himself.  I can perhaps forgive him for bowing to the Emperor of Japan.  It could show proper respect for an ancient civilization and a brilliant people.  But bowing to the king of Saudi Arabia was just gross.  The Saudis are just brigands.  And his handshake with Raul Castro at the Mandela funeral was also an embarrassment  -- JR

Rush Limbaugh Tuesday called President Obama an "Absolute Economic Idiot" at the top of his syndicated radio program.

Limbaugh was referring to remarks made by the president earlier in the day at the White House in an effort to extend unemployment insurance.  President Obama said that, "Voting for unemployment insurance helps people and creates jobs and voting against it does not."

"This guy is an absolute economic idiot.  He's sitting here.  He's touting the benefits of unemployment insurance for the last twenty minutes.  And, the first thing that comes to my mind is, 'Wait a minute, I thought we had this great economic recovery going because of him.'  And because of his astute, brilliant policies.  I thought the president had given us an economic recovery, and we're starting to come back here.

"They're reporting fourth quarter growth at four percent, did you hear that?  By the way, they're using new metrics to measure; it's nowhere near growing at four percent.  But that's what they're saying.  And in the midst of all of this economic growth, and all of this economic rebound, the most important thing is avoiding another government shutdown and extending unemployment benefits.

"The president just said that unemployment benefits actually create new jobs.  Now stop and think about that for a second.  Unemployment benefits create new jobs.  What is unemployment insurance?  It is paying people not to work.  Let's change the term.  Let's get rid of 'unemployment insurance' and let's call it 'paying people not to work.'

"The President of the United States just said to resounding applause, well I'm not sure that got applause, the only thing that's really gotten any applause in the White House, he's got all kinds of people standing behind him, is when he said 'we can't dare have another government shutdown.'  That got a standing ovation.  So, it tells you that kind of people in the room.  Anyway, paying people not to work can grow the economy.  Paying people not to work can create jobs."



Senate should reject race-baiter Adegbile from Civil Rights post

Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens today issued the following statement urging Senate rejection of Debo Adegbile as the next Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division:

“The Senate should reject Debo Adegbile from being confirmed as the next Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division.

“Adegbile is best known as the man who headed the NAACP Legal Defense Fund’s voluntary racial assault on the integrity of a dead Philadelphia police office in a quest to get his murderer off of death row.

“The attack on the character of the dead, defenseless officer was so egregious that the Fraternal Order of Police has come out against the nomination writing:

‘We are aware of the tried and true shield behind which activists of Adegbile’s ilk are wont to hide – that everyone is entitled to a defense; but surely you would agree that a defense should not be based upon falsely disparaging and savaging the good name and reputation of a lifeless police officer.  Certainly any legal scholar can see the injustice and absence of ethics in this cynical race-baiting approach to our legal system.’

“Adegbile has also supported Equal Employment Opportunity Commission efforts to prevent the usage of criminal background checks to screen potential new hires.  As the head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Office, Adegbile would be in a position to bring legal action against employers who engaged in the commonsense practice of ensuring that convicted thieves weren’t hired to oversee inventory or rapists weren’t serving as parking attendants.

“The nomination of Adegbile is an affront to the concept of moving toward a non-racial society, and he should be rejected on a bi-partisan basis by the United States Senate.”



Owning Up to the Obamacare Lies:  Liberals are finally admitting, quietly, that conservative critiques were right all along.

Those who have elected to keep close tabs on the reactions to Obamacare’s blotchy rollout will presumably have noticed that it has been marked by admissions of guilt. The latest such confession comes from The New Republic’s Noam Scheiber, who bluntly conceded yesterday that “Obamacare actually paves the way toward single payer.” Pushing back against Michael Moore’s unsettling criticisms of the law, Schreiber tweeted:

"Dear liberals bummed about Obamacare: Don't sweat it. It's going to get us to a single-payer system before long."

This, Scheiber made sure to explain, was not an accident, and nor was it merely a dose of post hoc optimism. Obamacare, he claimed, is in fact “a deceptively sneaky way to get the health care system both of us really want” — that is, single payer. And “Republicans are in some sense playing into the trap Obamacare laid for them.”

I honestly do not know whether Scheiber’s prediction is correct. When government wishes to expand itself, it is tough for people to resist, and the instances are legion of people who wanted a little change but were subjected instead to a lot. Still, I suspect that this will not be the case with Obamacare. For a start, the rollicking disaster that has been the law’s launch will now be projected into every home each and every time an expansion of government is suggested. And, disappointingly for the movement that spawned the change, Americans appear to be reacting to it by concluding that government should henceforth have less — not more — to do with health care. Either way, whatever happens in the future, I do know this: When Republicans have written their own version of Scheiber’s column, complaining that Obamacare is but a “deceptively sneaky way to get” to single payer, they have been immediately denounced for hysteria and mendacity and invited to remove the tin foil.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)


Thursday, January 09, 2014

Equality Versus Liberty

John Stossel

President Barack Obama says income inequality is "dangerous ... the defining challenge of our time." The pope is upset that capitalism causes inequality. Progressives, facing the failures of Obamacare, are eager to change the subject to America's "wealth gap."

It's true that today, the richest 1 percent of Americans own a third of America's wealth. One percent owns 35 percent!

But I say, so what? Progressives in the media claim that the rich get richer at the expense of the poor.

But that's a lie.

Hollywood sells the greedy-evil-capitalists-cheat-the-poor message with movies like Martin Scorsese's new film, "The Wolf of Wall Street," which portrays stock sellers as sex-crazed criminals. Years before, Oliver Stone's "Wall Street" created a creepy financier, Gordon Gekko, played by Michael Douglas, who smugly gloated, "It's a zero-sum game. Somebody wins; somebody loses."

This is how the left sees the market: a zero-sum game. If someone makes money, he took it from everyone else. The more the rich have, the less others have. It's as if the economy is a pie that's already on the table, waiting to be carved. The bigger the piece the rich take, the less that's left for everyone else. The economy is just a fight over who gets how much.

But this is absurd. Bill Gates took a huge slice of pie, but he didn't take it from me. By starting Microsoft, he baked millions of new pies. He made the rest of the world richer, too.

Entrepreneurs create things.

Over the past few decades, the difference in wealth between the rich and poor has grown. This makes people uncomfortable. But why is it a problem if the poor didn't get poorer?

Progressives claim they did. Some cite government data that show middle class incomes remaining relatively stagnant. But this data is misleading, too. It leaves out all government handouts, like rent subsidies and food stamps. It leaves out benefits like company-funded health insurance and pensions, which make up increasing portions of people's pay.

And it leaves out the innovation that makes life better for both the rich and poor. Even poor people today have access to cars, food, health care, entertainment and technology that rich people lusted for a few decades ago. Ninety percent of Americans living "below the poverty line" have smart phones, cable TV and cars. Seventy percent own two cars.

But hold on, says the left. Even if the poor reap some benefits from capitalism, it's just not "fair" that rich people have so much more. I suppose this is true. But what exactly is "fair"?

Is it fair that models are so good-looking? Why is it fair that some men are so much bigger than I, so no one will pay me to play pro sports? It's hardly fair that I was born in America, a country that offers me far greater opportunities than most other countries would. We Americans should be thankful that life is not fair!

Freedom isn't fair, if fair means equal. When people are free, some will be more successful than others. Some people are smarter or just luckier. Globalization and free-market capitalism multiply the effect of smarts and luck, allowing some people to get much richer than others. So what? Inequality may seem unfair, but the alternative -- government-forced equality -- is worse. It leaves everyone poor.

Opportunity is much more important than equality, and there is still income mobility in America. People born poor don't necessarily stay poor.

Pew research shows 58 percent of the kids born to the poorest fifth of families rose to a higher income group. Six percent rose all the way from the bottom fifth to the top fifth.

Sixty-one percent of kids born to the richest fifth of families fell from that group, and 9 percent fell all the way to the bottom.

Opportunity requires allowing people to take risks and make changes. We won't always like the outcomes. But over the long haul, we're still better off if people are free to strive and fail, or maybe -- reap big rewards.



Ideology vs. Reality

French President Francois Hollande has been confronted by the glaring light of reality -- sort of.

On New Year's Day, as his massive tax increases began taking effect, Hollande, a member of the Socialist Party, admitted that taxes in France have become "too heavy, much too heavy."

Indeed, as of Jan. 1, French households now must contend with a new value added tax on many goods and services and, writes International Business Times, "French companies will be required to pay 50 percent tax on all employee salaries in excess of 1 million euros. ... The effective tax rate will amount to 75 percent." Unemployment, which Hollande promised to reduce, has risen to nearly 11 percent. Some companies and wealthy people have left France in search of business-friendly environments. More will surely follow unless Hollande's rhetoric is followed by actual tax reductions.

Hollande's head-on collision with reality is reminiscent of President Bill Clinton's remarks in 1995 at a campaign fundraiser in Houston: "Probably there are people in this room still mad at me ... because you think I raised your taxes too much. It might surprise you to know that I think I raised them too much, too."

Neither Hollande (so far), nor Clinton, followed up on their remarks by cutting taxes. Like many other politicians, these men tried to have it both ways.

The next political leader who will be forced to adjust his left-wing ideology to reality is the new mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio, who has proposed a tax on the wealthy to fund universal pre-K education. He, too, thinks raising taxes on the successful is the way to prosperity for the poor. He should pick up the phone and ask Hollande how that is working for him, as Hollande's approval ratings are sinking faster than President Obama's. Even better, he might recall Calvin Coolidge's remark: "Don't expect to build up the weak by pulling down the strong."

Penalize success and prosperity and you get less of it. Subsidize bad decision-making by giving taxpayer money to the poor, and you may well undermine initiative and personal responsibility and create new generations of poor people.

The left in America and France have gained political power by appealing to voters' emotions, but when they achieve power their ideology harms the very people who voted for them when these well-intentioned programs prove unworkable. This presents conservatives and Republicans with an opportunity, as well as risks.

Liberals are allowed to be as ideological as they wish, and the major media and too many among the unfocused public will mostly support them. The left is never told they must compromise their ideology when reality proves them wrong, or "work with Republicans and conservatives" to achieve common goals. That is the trap liberals set for conservatives, who are repeatedly told they must compromise their principles if they hope to win elections, but whose squishy politics then become as unappealing as cold oatmeal.

Here is the path Republicans and conservatives must take if they not only want to win, but bring positive change to the country. Instead of debating feelings and ideology with the left (territory on which they almost always lose -- recall "compassionate conservative"), conservatives should hold their opponents accountable. Are their policies producing the results they claim? Is the record debt good for the country? Are agencies performing as their charter demands, and should their budgets be reduced or the agency eliminated if it can't show results? Every government agency and program should be regularly required to justify, not only its budget, but its very existence.

Americans typically hate waste. It is why as children most of us were told to clean our plates because somewhere in the world there were hungry people. Requiring the left to prove their programs and policies are producing outcomes at reasonable cost would shift the debate from ideology and good intentions to reality. This is where conservatives have a distinct advantage if they will embrace it.



Obama vs. the Little Sisters

By the bizarre logic of the White House, the nuns are part of the “war on women.”

It takes some doing to get embroiled in a court fight with nuns who provide hospice care for the indigent. Amazingly, the Obama administration has managed it.

Its legal battle with the Little Sisters of the Poor is the logical consequence of Obamacare’s conscience-trampling contraception mandate. The requirement went into effect January 1, but Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor issued a New Year’s Eve injunction against enforcing it on the Little Sisters.

They are Catholic nuns who follow the doctrinal teachings of the church and therefore oppose contraceptive and abortive drugs and sterilization, all of which Obamacare mandates that employers cover in their insurance plans. Given the ongoing delays, waivers, and exemptions associated with the law, it would seem natural simply to let the Little Sisters go about their business of pouring out their hearts for the sick and dying.

But this is a fight the administration won’t walk away from. For this White House, it is a matter of principle. And the principle is that the state trumps the convictions of people with deep-held religious beliefs.

When the contraception mandate first caused an uproar, the administration contrived a so-called accommodation for religiously oriented groups (actual churches have always been exempt). But whoever crafted it had a sick sense of humor. The very same document by which a group registers its moral objection to contraceptives and abortifacients also authorizes the insurer to cover them for the group’s employees. What the accommodation gives with one hand, it takes away with the other.

The Little Sisters refuse to sign such a document. They happen to be in an unusual situation because they get their insurance from another religiously affiliated organization opposed to contraceptives and abortifacients, so it may be that these drugs don’t get covered no matter what. But the Little Sisters can’t be sure of this — the regulations are complicated and subject to change.

Regardless, they don’t want to sign. They want no part in authorizing coverage of contraceptive or abortive drugs. Enthusiasts for the mandate scoff. What the nuns are objecting to, they insist, is just a piece of paper.

Just a piece of paper? So is a mortgage. So is a wedding certificate. So is a will. How would the board of directors of NARAL react if the government forced them to sign a “piece of paper” tacitly condemning contraception or abortion? Would they shrug it off as a mere formality?

The Little Sisters deserve deference. Their religious sensibility is different from — and, one hazards to say, more finely tuned than — that of the mandarins of President Barack Obama’s administrative state. In a dispute over what their conscience tells them to do or not to do, the Little Sisters are better positioned to know than anyone else.

Besides, who is harmed if the Little Sisters don’t provide contraception coverage? They are a voluntary organization. They aren’t imposing their views on anyone. Who, for that matter, is harmed if a secular organization run by people with moral objections to contraceptives and abortifacients refuses to cover them? Employees are still free to go out on their own and get contraceptives, which are widely available. If this sounds like an outlandish imposition, it is what people managed to do throughout American history all the way up to last week.

The contraception mandate has always had a strong ideological impetus. Opponents of the mandate “want to roll back the last 50 years in progress women have made in comprehensive health care in America,” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius notoriously declared in 2011. “We’ve come a long way in women’s health over the last few decades, but we are in a war.” By this bizarre way of thinking, a small congregation of nuns that cares for the most vulnerable is somehow complicit in a war on women’s health.

Instead of respecting the moral views of the Little Sisters, the administration hopes to grind them under foot by force of law. For shame.


There is an argument here that Obama would be wise to drop the contraception requirements for Catholic organizations.  It would get the Catholic church off his back.



Convicts Vote Democrat:  "According to a new study in The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, most convicted criminals register as Democrats. In fact, Breitbart reports, “The study found that felons registered Democratic over Republican by a six-to-one margin in some states, including New York, where 61.5% are Democrats and only 9% GOP. Another fact discovered was that 73% of the felons who would vote would vote Democrat.” They add, “The study said there are 5.8 million eligible voters in jail,” the majority of which are young black males. There's one thing the Left can always count on: support from criminals. Because pickpockets have to stick together.

The progressives’ Achilles’ heel:  "Progressives (i.e., liberals in the corrupted meaning of the term) love to portray themselves as lovers of the poor. That’s what they use to justify their never-ending, ever-growing welfare-state and regulatory programs. But as we libertarians have repeatedly shown, the welfare state and the regulated economy actually constitute an enormous attack on the freedom and well-being of the poor."


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)


Wednesday, January 08, 2014

The final death of Lawrence of Arabia

Peter O'Toole, who was marvelous in "Lawrence of Arabia," died recently. Many commentators and critics feel that Lawrence's story and the movie about him influenced the actions of many European statesmen, politicians, and members of Western foreign ministries and security services. However, there is considerable argument as to whether and what, as a matter of historical fact, T. E. Lawrence contributed to the British war effort by collaborating with the Bedouin tribes of the Arabian Peninsula against the Ottoman Turks during the First World War. Not all historians agree to the truth of the glowing reports of his personality, moral stature and personal behavior.

Nevertheless, the enigmatic figure of Lawrence, an intelligence officer, became a role model for Western diplomats and statesmen, and he is revered as a master of mediating with the leaders of the Arab world. He seemed secretive and manipulative, with the rare ability and knowledge to exploit Arab ideology to achieve victory and foster the interests of the West, and to build inter-cultural cooperation and coexistence in a way that was both noble and romantic.

The Arabs with whom Lawrence collaborated were romanticized and made to appear exotic and other-worldly. The murder, grudges, blood feuds, treachery, deception, destruction, violence, theft, robbery and looting, all deeply ingrained in the psyches of the Arab tribes, were wrapped in romanticism and existentialist concepts explained and justified as necessary, forced upon the Bedouins by their daily struggle to subsist in the hard conditions imposed on them by the desert.

That was the foundation for utterly false and baseless concepts such as "Arab honor" and "his word is his bond," from which the image of the noble, almost feral, desert Bedouin Arab was constructed. Tales worthy of the Thousand and One Nights were told about the loyalty of the Arabs, their honor, trustworthiness and other imaginary transcendental qualities, turning the Arab in to a paradigm on which generations of Western intellectuals were reared, especially those who eventually went to work for the British Foreign Office. Critics of the blind worship of Lawrence have always claimed that the image of the British officer and his Arab partners was constructed through an emotional idealization resulting from a general lack of expertise regarding the Middle East, a region veiled in mystery, wonder and enchantment.

Few people have bothered to read the Muqaddimah, or Introduction, written by Arab historian Ibn Khaldun in the 14th century, in which he describes the Bedouins as destructive, lacking any sense of morality or values, and working only to destroy culture and world order. Even fewer have read Fouad Ajami's 1998 book, The Dream Palace of the Arabs: A Generation's Odyssey, with its painful criticism of the pitiful Arab, whose inherent culture left him no shred of sincerity, creativity or courage. Worse, even fewer members of Arab society itself have dared to honestly criticize its faults for fear of reprisals.

In the West, however, there were scholars who did objectively study the weaknesses and faults of the Arab Middle East, but the lack of openness, jealousy and the dark, ancient tribal pride made the Arabs sneer at such scholars as "Orientalists," unqualified pretenders who had the audacity to claim knowledge of the East. Those industrious, forthright scholars were accused by Arab "intellectuals" like Professor Edward Said of arrogantly patronizing the Arabs. The claim of Said, and others like him, was that they were not scholars but were in reality ignorant, stigmatizing the Arabs because of their imperialist-colonialist mindset and fanatical Christian hatred for the Arabs and Muslims, as well as their unjustified feelings of superiority.

Peter O'Toole was a great actor, but the movie "Lawrence of Arabia" was nothing more than a Hollywood fantasy which, like the imaginary story of Lawrence, swept away many romantics and for decades had a negative impact on the decisions made by influential Western officials and statesmen dealing with policy in the Middle East. The problem is that today as well, Western leaders and policy-makers view and discuss the problems of the Middle East through the prism of Lawrence of Arabia, romantic, distorted and nostalgic as it is, seeing only the unilateral Arab position of every conflict, and adopting paradigms, symbols and historical deceptions as the gospel truth.

Lies told repeatedly, as the past has shown, become historical truths. Actually, Hollywood's world of dreams and fantasy did not penetrate the wandering sand dunes of the evil and unjust acts perpetrated by the Arabs and Bedouins throughout the years of the jahiliyya (the era of ignorance before Islam) which left their indelible imprint of murder and theft. Those crimes accompanied the Arabs and Muslims from the rise of Islam and accompany them to this day. All the evil storms of history visited upon humanity did not expose to the people of Europe (who today host well-established enclaves of radical Islam in their midst) even the surface of the slaughter and injustice carried out by Muslims in the name of Islam, "the religion of peace," against Jews and Christians. Europe is still influenced by the fantasies of Lawrence of Arabia, captivated by the specious charms of the Arabs and Islam and unaware of the catastrophe that will be visited on the world as soon as the Islamist genie is let out of the bottle, making the World Trade Center look like three minutes of "coming attractions."

Emotionally identifying with Lawrence's Arab narrative, the West is in denial. It disregards the warnings radiating from radical Islam and the tragedy of the persecuted, decimated Christian communities in the Arab Middle East as the threat to Europe steadily increases. As a collective blind eye is turned, the lives and property of the Christian communities is stolen, their churches are burned and their honor is defiled, exactly as the ancient Jewish communities in the Arab states were persecuted before they fled for their lives as refugees and eventually found a safe haven in the State of Israel.

Nevertheless, Lawrence of Arabia-style mythology flourishes, the paradigm of the "good, noble Arabs" balancing the paradigm of the "bad, Protocols of the Elders of Zion Jews" who oppress "Palestine," helping to stir the smoldering embers of European anti-Semitism. The ancient European hatred of the Jews, dormant and in remission since the end of the Second World War, has reawakened in a new, politically correct form: Europe does not hate the Jews, but rather it is pro-Palestinian and thus anti-Zionist and anti-Israeli...

Europeans, who for generations (and until the end of the Second World War) evicted the Jews from their countries screeching "Go back to Palestine" now impose boycotts, divestments and sanctions on the descendants of the Jews murdered, tortured and exiled by their grandparents during the Holocaust, persecuting them even after they settled in their ancient home in the Land of Israel. Western leaders claim that as soon as the Palestinian problem, by which they mean the problem of Israel's existence, has been resolved, peace will return to the Middle East. They blame Israel for the stalled negotiations, which have dead-ended simply because the Palestinians refuse to recognize Israel as the homeland of the Jew people, which would end the conflict, preferring instead to plot the destruction the State of Israel.

The leaders of the West are fully aware that the problem of the Palestinian refugees was solved long ago and that there are currently millions of genuine refugees all over the world whose lives are in danger. They know that the Arabs' thirst for blood has a multitude of causes that are not even remotely related to "Palestine," but nevertheless they delude themselves into thinking that the chaos in the Middle East will somehow disappear if the Palestinian issue is "resolved." Israel, democratic and pluralistic, which has absorbed Jews from all the countries of the Diaspora, including Ethiopia, is castigated as "apartheid. Western leaders also ignore the critical role played by the Israel's security fence in protecting the country's civilians from Palestinian terrorism, and call it the "apartheid wall."

Those same European politicians, using threats of economic, academic and political sanctions, are currently trying to force Israel into making concessions to the Palestinians that will endanger its future existence and expose it to deadly terrorist attacks. Politicians like John Kerry and Catherine Ashton, who have virtually no understanding of the Middle Eastern mindset, exert pressure on the Israelis in an attempt to rob them of the land of their forefathers, the only place on earth where they found a genuine haven free of anti-Semitism, and to expose them to existential dangers equaled only the 1930s and '40s.

Fortunately for the West, what was mistakenly called the Arab Spring quickly turned into the Arab Winter, and the storms of internecine Sunni-Shi'ite terrorism and slaughter exposed the convenient lapses of memory for what they were and tore away the myths concealing the true face of the Arab-Muslim world. It is now a recognizable fact that all over the globe, wherever there are Arabs and Muslims there is slaughter, terrorism, mass murder of both brother Muslims and "infidels,' pedophilia, the oppression of women, rape, the murder and persecution of Jews and Christians, the burning of houses of worship, and the use of weapons of mass destruction to kill civilians, none of which has the slightest relevance to the so-called "issue of Palestine."

The Lawrence of Arabia syndrome Western politicians suffer from illustrates the limitations of people like Barack Obama, John Kerry and Catherine Ashton. Raised on Western values of pluralism and integration and influenced by British intellectual orientation, they have absolutely no ability to even imagine let alone appreciate or understand the manipulations of which Shi'ite Iranian Ayatollahs and Sunni Arab sheikhs and leaders are capable.

At the recent meetings held by Western politicians with representatives of Shi'ite and Sunni Islam and with the heads of the Palestinian terrorist syndicate, meetings which dealt with their various religious schools, it was obvious that not only are the Westerners innocents, but that every P5+1 leader goes to bed at night feeling that he, personally, is today's Lawrence of Arabia. It is sad to see how pathetic they were, and how frightening, as they lead the Western world toward the brink of a Third World War.

Anyone who follows the misguided Middle East policies of the European Union and John Kerry in their dealings with Iran can easily understand the extent to which Lawrence of Arabia's deceptive heritage is a dangerous illusion, a desert mirage. In Hollywood the movie ends with the credits, but in reality European and American innocence will end with catastrophic mass killings, with millions murdered by terrorism, chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, a situation only hinted at by events in Iraq and Syria. Which of today's Western leaders would like to be remembered by history as responsible, and credited with writing the script?



Liberals’ Skewed View of Conservatives

Have you ever been pigeon-holed at a party by a liberal? I recommend avoiding it at all costs, but if it happens, go with it. You’ll get an education in what our opponents actually think as he rails, whines and complains about the terrible, inhuman monster that lurks on the fringes of American society.

This scourge is called a “conservative,” and I hope I never meet one in a dark alley. They apparently carry automatic weapons as they stalk the streets, hating science and hunting the poor for sport.

You’ll quickly note how your liberal monologist – they literally never shut up – is a scholar of all things conservative. Of course, he has never actually met one, living as he does in an urban sewer like San Francisco or in a subsidized academic enclave of Marxist fantasy like Berkeley. But who needs experience when you can get convenient bite-sized morsels of pre-processed ideology from MSNBC between the endless reruns of Lock Up?

First off, you’ll learn that conservatives are scary. They tend to identify with the traditional male paradigm that values aggressiveness, fierce patriotism, and personal responsibility. And that’s just conservative women.

Conservatives believe in owning guns, and will barbarically celebrate whenever some poor victim of society gets ventilated trying to invade a conservative’s home. Conservatives owning guns is terrible because they could, in theory, go on one of those shooting sprees liberals love to exploit. Except they never do – shooters inevitably have either written mash notes to the pantheon of liberal idols or received instructions from their talking Rottweilers. The Tea Party gunman remains the liberals’ Holy Grail.

Now, how liberals ignore the utter lack of conservative violence when arguing for confiscating their guns illustrates another theme. A lack of empirical evidence is not a problem for a liberal. Evidence isn’t an issue when your entire ideology trains you to come to a politically useful conclusion, then work backwards.

Take Obamacare. To a conservative, the evidence would seem to be damning. You can’t sign up for it. You can’t keep the policy you like, or buy a new one that meet your needs. The prices are going up. You can’t get in to see your doctor. Grey’s Anatomy is still on the air.

But to a liberal, its total failure is no problem. You see, Obamacare is a self-evident good. It centralizes power to the liberal elite, so trivialities like it being an utter fiasco are irrelevant.

Also, and most importantly, you will learn that Obamacare is a wonderful because conservatives hate black people. If fact, apparently conservatives would eagerly have embraced the President’s entire socialist agenda if only his mother and father had both come from the fjords of Norway.

Your liberal amateur anthropologist will explain to you that racism is the defining characteristic of conservatism. Apparently, all conservatives think of is race, which seems odd considering that it’s liberals who won’t stop talking about it.

Conservatives are also religious, which makes them even worse. Your liberal interlocutor will be happy to put on his theologian hat and start talking about how all conservatives hate evolution, believe dinosaurs and cavemen coexisted, and burn crosses.

Oh wait, that last one is a Democrat thing. Remember, even if you could wedge a word in edgewise, it would be impolite to mention the Democrat origins of the KKK, Democrat hero Woodrow Wilson’s racial theories, or to seek clarification about whether Democrat Senate icon Robert Byrd was an Imperial Cyclops or an Exalted Kleagle.

Your liberal conversationalist might even offer you a few select Bible verses to reinforce how a Jewish carpenter from 2000 years ago who he doesn’t believe in totally would have agreed with all his 21st Century leftist policy prescriptions. He’ll get mad if you suggest that Jesus’s initial reaction to Obamacare would probably be to chide its sponsors for lying about it.

You will also learn that conservatives hate the poor, including conservatives who were poor until adhering to conservative values, along with hard work, made them not poor any more.

After all, hate is the only possible explanation for conservative resentment of a government that steals the money conservatives worked hard to earn to give it to Democrat serfs who, by definition didn’t work hard at all. Well, hate and racism, because the totally-not-at-all-racist liberals assume anyone poor is a minority.

Another great thing about liberals is that they don’t need any “experience” or “training” to feel free to opine. I recall one hipster lecturing me on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Although Iraqi weapons of mass destruction had been my job during Operation Desert Storm, I was enthralled by the perspective of someone whose tactical background consisted of reading slam poetry at coffee house open mics in Burbank.

You’ll find they’re weapons experts too. That’s why they can explain how you don’t need a modern “assault rifle.” Yeah, listen to that guy with the “Arms are for hugging” bumpersticker on this Pirus. He knows. He’ll also be happy to tell you how the law should limit the number of calibers in the magazine clip of your automatic AR-15 assault cannon.

And, finally, you’ll hear about how conservatives totally hate sex. This is likely to be followed with complaints about the large size of conservative families. By that point, you’ve probably been introduced to your liberal acquaintance’s spouse and now understand why liberal families are so small and why your liberal buddy is so very, very unhappy.

Just smile, nod, and spare him a little pity as you excuse yourself to head to the bar to get yourself a double.



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)


Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Obama Busted: Birth Cert Contains Words/Places That Did Not Exist In 1961! African American & Kenya

4 Simple Questions from a New Jersey Attorney…

1. Back in 1961 people of color were called ‘Negroes.’ So how can the Obama ’birth certificate’ state he is “African-American” when the term wasn’t even used at that time?

2. The birth certificate that the White House released lists Obama’s birth as August 4, 1961 & Lists Barack Hussein Obama as his father. No big deal, right ? At the time of Obama’s birth, it also shows that his father is aged 25 years old, and that Obama’s father was born in “Kenya , East Africa”.

This wouldn’t seem like anything of concern, except the fact that Kenya did not even exist until 1963, two whole years after Obama’s birth, and 27 years after his father’s birth. How could Obama’s father have been born in a country that did not yet Exist? Up and until Kenya was formed in 1963, it was known as the “British East Africa Protectorate”. (check it below)

3. On the Birth Certificate released by the White House, the listed place of birth is “Kapi’olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital”. This cannot be, because the hospital(s) in question in 1961 were called ”KauiKeolani Children’s Hospital” and “Kapi’olani Maternity Home”, respectively. The name did not change to Kapi’olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital until 1978, when these two hospitals merged. How can this particular name of the hospital be on a birth certificate dated 1961 if this name had not yet been applied to it until 1978?


Why hasn’t this been discussed in the major media ?

4. Perhaps a clue comes from Obama’s book on his father. He states how proud he is of his father fighting in WW II. I’m not a math genius, so I may need some help from you. Barack Obama’s “birth certificate” says his father was 25 years old in 1961 when Obama was born. That should have put his father’s date of birth approximately 1936 – if my math holds (Honest! I did That without a calculator!). Now we need a non-revised history book – one that hasn’t been altered to satisfy the author’s goals – to verify that WW II was basically between 1939 and 1945. Just how many 3 year olds fight in Wars? Even in the latest stages of WW II his father wouldn’t have been more than 9 years old. Does that mean that Mr. Obama is a liar, or simply chooses to alter the facts to satisfy his imagination or political purposes?



An email from Doug Ross:

The site does look useful.  I got the post above from it-- JR

In 2012, I created a completely automated news-gathering site called BadBlue.  It has grown very quickly in some conservative circles, because it brings together large and small websites, from obscure blogs to the biggest wire services.  It uses Twitter and Alexa traffic rankings to level the playing field between those thousands of websites.

More recently, I added Guns, Prepper, Technology, Entertainment, Cars, and Finance channels to round out other interest areas (including culture):

Again, there are no human editors for any of these channels: everything you see on each site is based upon social media mentions.  I believe it's fairly unique in that respect, but most importantly, it reflects the values and interests of our community of conservatives.

So I write to ask you a huge favor: can you check out BadBlue and, if you like it, share it with your friends or otherwise help me get the word out?  Either way, I'd love to hear your feedback or questions.  I believe new media outlets like this can help to convert those uninterested in politics using culture, technology, finance, cars, etc. as levers.



A touching memoir of a good conservative man by Ann Coulter

The longest baby ever born at the Albany, N.Y., hospital, at least as of May 5, 1926, who grew up to be my strapping father, passed away last Friday morning.

As Mother and I stood at Daddy's casket Monday morning, Mother repeated his joke to him, which he said on every wedding anniversary until a few years ago when Lewy bodies dementia prevented him from saying much at all: "54 years, married to the wrong woman." And we laughed.

John Vincent Coulter was of the old school, a man of few words, the un-Oprah, no crying or wearing your heart on your sleeve, and reacting to moments of great sentiment with a joke. Or as we used to call them: men.

When he was moping around the house once, missing my brother who had just gone back to college, he said, "Well, if you had cancer long enough, you'd miss it."

He'd indicate his feelings about my skirt length by saying, "You look nice, Hart, but you forgot to put on your skirt."

Of course, he did show strong emotion when The New York Post would run a photo of Teddy Kennedy saying the rosary. I can still see the look of disgust. I saw that face in "How To Read People Like a Book" and it was NOT a good chapter.

Your parents are your whole world when you are a child. You only recognize what is unique about them when you get older and see how the rest of the world diverges from your standard of normality.

So it took me awhile to realize that by telling my friends that Father was an ex-FBI agent and a union-buster whose hobbies included rebuilding Volkswagens and shooting squirrels in our backyard, I was painting the image of a rough Eliot Ness type, rather than the cheerful, funny raconteur they would meet.

Besides being very funny, Father had an absolutely straight moral compass without ever being preachy or judgmental or even telling us in words. He just was good.

He would return to a store if he was given too much change -- and this was a man who was so "thrifty," as we Scots like to say, he told us he wanted to be buried in two cardboard boxes from the A&P rather than pay for a coffin.

When I was bombarded with arguments for baby-killing as a kid, I asked Father about the old chestnut involving a poverty-stricken, unwed teenage girl who gets pregnant. (This was before they added the "impregnated by her own father" part.) Father just said, "I don't care. If it's a life, it's a life." I'm still waiting to hear an effective counterargument.

Father hated puffery, pomposity, snobbery, fake friendliness, fake anything. Like Kitty's father in "Anna Karenina," he could detect a substanceless suitor in a heartbeat. (They were probably the same ones who looked nervous when I told them Father was ex-FBI and liked to shoot squirrels in the backyard.)

He hated unions because of their corrupt leadership, ripping off the members for their own aggrandizement. But he had more respect for genuine working men than anyone I've ever known. He was, in short, the molecular opposite of John Edwards.

Father didn't care what popular opinion was: There was right and wrong. I don't recall his ever specifically talking about J. Edgar Hoover or Joe McCarthy, but we knew he thought the popular histories were bunk. That's why "Treason" was dedicated to him, the last book of mine he was able to read.

When Father returned from the war, he used the G.I. Bill to complete college and law school in three years. In order to get to law school quickly, he chose the easiest college major -- a major that so impressed him, he told my oldest brother that if he ever took one single course in sociology, Father would cut off his tuition payments.

As a young FBI agent fresh out of law school, one of Father's first assignments was to investigate job applicants at a uranium enrichment plant, the only suitable land for which was apparently located on some property owned by the then-vice president, Alben Barkley, in Paducah, Ky.

One day, a group of FBI agents saw the beautiful Nell Husbands Martin at lunch with her mother. They asked the waitress for her name and flipped a coin to see who could ask her out first. Father lost the coin toss, so he paid off the other agents. And that's how Nell became my mother.

Mother swore she'd never marry a drinker, a smoker or a Catholic, and she got all three, reforming Father on all but the Catholicism. Even in foreign countries where none of us spoke the language, Father went to Mass every Sunday until the very end.

Of course, toward the end, he probably didn't even remember he was a Catholic. But on the bright side, he didn't remember that Teddy Kennedy was a Catholic, either.

Father spent most of his nine-year FBI career as a Red hunter in New York City.

He never talked much about his FBI days. I learned that he worked on the Rudolf Abel case -- the highest-ranking Soviet spy ever captured in U.S. history -- during one of my brother's eulogies on Monday. But when Father read a paper I wrote at Cornell defending McCarthy and came across the name William Remington, he told me that had been his case.

Father mostly had contempt for Soviet spies. In addition to damaging information, such as military plans and nuclear secrets, the spies also collected massive amounts of utterly useless information on things like U.S. agricultural production. These were people who looked at a flush toilet like it was a spaceship.

He told me Soviet spies reveled in the whole cloak-and-dagger aspect of espionage. One spy gave weirdly specific details to a contact before their first meeting: He would have the New York Herald Tribune folded three times, tucked under his left elbow at a particular angle.

When the spy walked into the hotel lobby for the rendezvous, Father nearly fell off his chair when the man with the Herald Tribune folded under his elbow just so ... was also wearing a full-length fur coat. But he couldn't have told his contact: "I'll be the only white man in North America wearing a full-length fur coat."

In the early 1980s, as vice president and labor lawyer for Phelps Dodge copper company, Father broke a strike against the company, which culminated in the largest union decertification ever -- at that time and perhaps still. President Reagan had broken the air traffic controllers' strike in 1981. But unions recognized that it was the breaking of the Phelps Dodge strike a few years later that landed the greater blow, as described in the book "Copper Crucible."

There was massive violence by the strikers, including guns being fired into the homes of the mine employees who returned to work. Every day, Father walked with the strikebreakers through the picket line, (in my mind) brushing egg off his suit lapel.

By 1986 it was over; the mineworkers voted against the union and Phelps Dodge was saved. For any liberals still reading, this is what's known as a "happy ending."

To Mother's lifelong consternation -- until he had dementia and she could get him back by smothering him with hugs and kisses -- Father wasn't demonstrative. But all he wanted was to be with Mother (and to work on his Volkswagens). They traveled the world together, went to DAR conventions together, engaged in Republican politics together and went to the New York Philharmonic together -- for three decades, their subscription seats were on the highest landing, or as we Scots call it, the "Music Lovers" level.

When Mother was in a rehabilitative facility briefly after surgery a few years ago and Father was not supposed to be driving, we were relieved that a snowstorm had knocked out the power to the garage door opener, so Daddy couldn't get to the car. It would just be a week and then Mother would be home.

My brother came home to check on Father the first day of this arrangement to find that he had taken an ax to the side door of the garage, so he could drive to the rehab center and sit with Mother all day.

When she left him for five days last summer to go to a family reunion in Kentucky, at some point, Father, who hadn't been able to speak much anymore, looked up and asked his nurse, "Where is she?"

And last Friday morning at 2 he passed away, in his bedroom with Mother. The police and firemen told my brother that they kept trying to distract Mother to keep her away from the bedroom with Father's body, but she kept padding back into the bedroom to be close to him.

Now Daddy is with Joe McCarthy and Ronald Reagan. I hope they stop laughing about the Reds long enough to talk to God about smiting some liberals for me.




Fusion centers: Expensive and dangerous to our liberty:  "Amidst unprecedented focus on overreach at the National Security Agency (NSA), many Americans have come to understand the risk of being spied on by the government in their electronic communications. But the intelligence-sharing hubs coordinated between DHS and state and local police departments around the country, called 'fusion centers,' show there is extensive surveillance of Americans’ physical and social activities as well."

How government cutbacks ended Sweden’s great depression:  "During the recent financial crisis, Sweden has emerged as one of very few financially sound economies. The country’s strong position, setting it apart from most Western nations, makes it an interesting example of what could -- or should -- have been done. Indeed, Paul Krugman, the former economist and Nobel Prize laureate, has repeatedly pointed approvingly at how the Swedes handled their depression in the early 1990s as the reason for their recent success. Specifically, he notes the nationalization of some banks at the time of the crisis. While he misses the point by focusing exclusively on a narrow selection of short-term measures rather than longer-term changes, as is the hallmark of a Keynesian, Krugman is right that Sweden has done some things right."

Taxi firm's “surge pricing” again angers people who don’t understand economics:  "'Caught by surprise' is rather subjective, as Uber took great pains to warn users that surge pricing, its policy of multiplying fares during periods of high demand, would be in effect on New Year's Eve. Furthermore, the Uber app requires users to acknowledge when surge pricing is in effect, even going so far as requiring manual input of the fare multiplier before hailing a car. So whose fault is it that users were rung up for $350 car rides? Nobody's, of course. Uber's surge pricing policy is not only legal, but entirely fair and rational."

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


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)


Monday, January 06, 2014

Black Thug Arrested For `Knockout' Hate Crimes

Who knew?  Blacks CAN commit hate crimes

If Obama had a son....

    The NYPD's Hate Crimes Task Force busted a Brooklyn man for at least seven knockout assaults, cops said Friday.

    Barry Baldwin, 35, punched out the victims between Nov. 9 and Christmas Eve in Canarsie and Midwood, police said.

    All of the victims were white women and most were Jewish, a law-enforcement source said. At least two of the attacks occurred on the Sabbath.

He's a real tough guy, sucker punching women and running away. A 78 year old woman pushing a stroller with her grandchild. A young mother walking her daughter. Another 78 year old woman sitting on a park bench.

He's got enough charges, if convicted to put him away for life which, if some white prison gang has it's way, will be a very short.



5 Ways the Liberal Obsession With Income Inequality Hurts the Poor

After the last century, it shouldn't even be controversial to assert that the more a nation focuses on income inequality, the more it hurts the poor. After all, there have been whole societies formed around the slogan Marx popularized, "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" -- and they've universally been lousy places to be poor. Would you rather be poor in America or Cuba, Vietnam or the old Soviet Union? If the question doesn't answer itself, P.J. O'Rourke's quotation about traveling to the Soviet Union with a gang of Communists should answer it for you, "These were people who believed everything about the Soviet Union was perfect, but they were bringing their own toilet paper." Meanwhile, we live in a world where China has seen tremendous economic growth by embracing some of the capitalistic policies that made America a superpower while the Democrats are embracing some of the policies that led to hundreds of millions of Chinese living in huts on less than a dollar a day.

Getting beyond that, shouldn't there be massive income inequality between someone with rare skills who works 70 hours a week and an unskilled part time worker? Most people say "yes" and even liberals who talk obsessively about income inequality behave as if there should be a difference. Do you see Michael Moore, Barack Obama, or Al Gore refusing to work for more than $20 an hour because they want to show solidarity with poor workers? No, they believe they deserve their money, but those "other people" should have more of their money taken away for the common good. If a CEO should have his pay limited, why shouldn't Michael Moore make $20 an hour? If Barack Obama thinks fast food workers are so vitally important to the economy, why doesn't he reduce his salary to the point where he only makes as much as they do? If Al Gore really believes in fighting for income inequality, why doesn't he refuse to make more than the guy who spends 8 hours a day saying, "Welcome to Wal-Mart?"

The truth is that income inequality is of minimal importance in a nation like America, where so many people already move between classes, where the poor are doing so much better than they used to, and where our poor already do so well compared to the rest of the world. "Among children from families in the bottom fifth of the income distribution, 84 percent of those who go on to get a college degree will escape the bottom fifth, and 19 percent will make it all the way to the top fifth." During the Great Depression, more than 60% of Americans were living below the poverty line. Over the last 50 years, that number has generally ranged between 12%-15% -- and even that dramatically overstates the number of poor Americans because it doesn't take into account government assistance that's being paid out. On top of all that, liberals get so angry when people point out that more than 80% of poor Americans have cell phones, televisions and refrigerators while "most Americans living below the official poverty line also own a motor vehicle and have more living space than the average European." Yet, they don't take into account the fact that almost half of the world's population still lives on less than $2.50 a day. In other words, if you are poor, you can live better and have more opportunity to advance in America than you will anywhere else. That's why immigrants all across the world still want to come to this country.

What liberals don't realize or alternately, just don't care about, is that their obsession with income inequality may make them feel good, but it actually hurts the poor in a number of ways.

1) The higher the government mandated minimum wage/living wage, the more people it prices out of jobs: When you force businesses to pay people more than they can return in value with their work, companies tend to respond either by hiring better quality people, replacing the jobs with automation, moving the posts overseas or by looking for opportunities to get rid of the positions entirely. The higher the wages and benefits the government insists on, the more stagnant it makes the labor market for the people who need to build their skills the most. If your goal were to deliberately put as many young, unskilled single mothers out of work as possible, the best politically feasible way to do it would be to jack the minimum wage up into the stratosphere.

2) It emphasizes making people more comfortable, not helping them succeed: There is no shame in taking any honest job, but you're not supposed to make a living pressing the button that drops the fries into the grease at McDonald's. If you work long enough at an entry level job to worry about raising the minimum wage, you're failing your family, your society and yourself. Instead of encouraging minimum skill workers to demand that the government force businesses to give them more money than they're currently worth, we should be encouraging people to build their skills and move up, move on or start their own business. Want poor people to be eligible for more education or training? Want to give them micro-loans? Want to make it easier for them to create small businesses? Those are policies that make poor Americans more valuable. That's good for them and the country. On the other hand, trying to redistribute income ultimately brings everyone down, especially the poor Americans who lose their drive after becoming dependent on it.

3) The more government becomes involved, the more it stagnates the economy: As John F. Kennedy said, "A rising tide lifts all boats." The stronger the economy is, the more jobs it creates and the more everyone -- poor, middle-class, or rich -- benefits. How do you make the economy stronger? You keep the government small, taxes low, and regulations light. That's a proven formula that has worked time and time again. On the other hand, if you want to constipate the economy, you make the government bigger, increase taxes and pour on the regulations. How did that latter set of "solutions" work out for Detroit?

4) The more the government focuses on income inequality, the harder it is to get ahead: As Thomas Sowell likes to say, "There are no solutions; there are only trade-offs." You can see this very clearly with Obamacare, where a few people are getting subsidized care, while tens of millions more are losing their health care and paying considerably more to make up for it. It works the same way with income inequality. Want to make Wal-Mart pay all its employees twice as much? Then that means all the poor Americans who shop at Wal-Mart will have to spend more of their limited incomes to pay for it. Want to give more tax dollars to the poor? Then the rich and middle class will have to pay more in taxes. So, the moment that poor American is making enough money to get into the middle class, he's hit with a bigger tax bill that makes it harder for him to ever get ahead. In other words, the more resources we put into "helping" the poor, the harder we ultimately make it for those very same people to ever permanently escape poverty and live the American Dream.

5) It ignores the real causes of poverty: The real causes of lasting poverty in America are not greed, the rich, racism, America being "unfair," or any of the other excuses that you hear so often. Instead, the harsh truth that so many people don't want to hear is that if you stay poor in America, it's usually because you made bad life choices. Via Walter Williams, here's what you have to do in order to avoid poverty in America.

"Complete high school; get a job, any kind of a job; get married before having children; and be a law-abiding citizen. Among both black and white Americans so described, the poverty rate is in the single digits."

Instead of lying to destitute Americans and telling them that the rich became wealthy by stealing the money that the poor never had in the first place, why not tell people the truth? Yes, it might make some poor Americans feel bad, but do you think welfare, food stamps, and living in a housing project do wonders for people's moods?



The New York Times Undermines Obama Terrorism Theory

The New York Times just delivered a mortal blow to the Obama administration and its Middle East policy. Call it fratricide. It was clearly unintentional. Indeed, is far from clear that the paper realizes what it has done.

Last Saturday the Times published an 8,000-word account by David Kirkpatrick detailing the terrorist strike against the US Consulate and the CIA annex in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11, 2012. In it, Kirkpatrick tore to shreds the foundations of President Barack Obama's counterterrorism strategy and his overall policy in the Middle East.

Obama first enunciated those foundations in his June 4, 2009, speech to the Muslim world at Cairo University. Ever since, they have been the rationale behind US counterterror strategy and US Middle East policy.

Obama's first assertion is that radical Islam is not inherently hostile to the US. As a consequence, America can appease radical Islamists. Moreover, once radical Muslims are appeased, they will become US allies, (replacing the allies the US abandons to appease the radical Muslims).

Obama's second strategic guidepost is his claim that the only Islamic group that is a bona fide terrorist organization is the faction of al-Qaida directly subordinate to Osama bin Laden's successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri. Only this group cannot be appeased and must be destroyed through force.

The administration has dubbed the Zawahiri faction of al-Qaida "core al-Qaida." And anyone who operates in the name of al-Qaida, or any other group that does not have courtroom-certified operational links to Zawahiri, is not really al-Qaida, and therefore, not really a terrorist group or a US enemy.

These foundations have led the US to negotiate with the Taliban in Afghanistan. They are the rationale for the US's embrace of the Muslim Brotherhood worldwide. They are the basis for Obama's allegiance to Turkey's Islamist government, and his early support for the Muslim Brotherhood-dominated Syrian opposition.

They are the basis for the administration's kneejerk support for the PLO against Israel.

Obama's insistent bid to appease Iran, and so enable the mullocracy to complete its nuclear weapons program. is similarly a product of his strategic assumptions. So, too, the US's current diplomatic engagement of Hezbollah in Lebanon owes to the administration's conviction that any terror group not directly connected to Zawahiri is a potential US ally.

From the outset of the 2011 revolt against the regime of Muammar Gaddafi in Libya, it was clear that a significant part of the opposition was composed of jihadists aligned if not affiliated with al-Qaida. Benghazi was specifically identified by documents seized by US forces in Iraq as a hotbed of al-Qaida recruitment.

Obama and his advisers dismissed and ignored the evidence. The core of al-Qaida, they claimed, was not involved in the anti-Gaddafi revolt. And to the extent jihadists were fighting Gaddafi, they were doing so as allies of the US.

In other words, the two core foundations of Obama's understanding of terrorism and of the Muslim world were central to US support for the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi.

With Kirkpatrick's report, the Times exposed the utter falsity of both.  Kirkpatrick showed the mindset of the US-supported rebels and through it, the ridiculousness of the administration's belief that you can't be a terrorist if you aren't directly subordinate to Zawahiri.

One US-supported Islamist militia commander recalled to him that at the outset of the anti-Gaddafi rebellion, "Teenagers came running around. [asking] `Sheikh, sheikh, did you know al-Qaida? Did you know Osama bin Laden? How do we fight?"

In the days and weeks following the September 11, 2012, attack on the US installations in Benghazi in which US ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed, the administration claimed that the attacks were not carried out by terrorists. Rather they were the unfortunate consequence of a spontaneous protest by otherwise innocent Libyans.

According to the administration's version of events, these guileless, otherwise friendly demonstrators, who killed the US ambassador and three other Americans, were simply angered by a YouTube video of a movie trailer which jihadist clerics in Egypt had proclaimed was blasphemous.

In an attempt to appease the mob after the fact, Obama and then-secretary of state Hillary Clinton shot commercials run on Pakistani television apologizing for the video and siding with the mob against the movie-maker, who is the only person the US has imprisoned following the attack. Then-ambassador to the UN and current National Security Adviser Susan Rice gave multiple television interviews placing the blame for the attacks on the video.

According to Kirkpatrick's account of the assault against the US installations in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, the administration's description of the assaults was a fabrication. Far from spontaneous political protests spurred by rage at a YouTube video, the attack was premeditated.

US officials spotted Libyans conducting surveillance of the consulate nearly 15 hours before the attack began.

Libyan militia warned US officials "of rising threats against Americans from extremists in Benghazi," two days before the attack.

From his account, the initial attack - in which the consulate was first stormed - was carried out not by a mob, but by a few dozen fighters. They were armed with assault rifles. They acted in a coordinated, professional manner with apparent awareness of US security procedures.

During the initial assault, the attackers shot down the lights around the compound, stormed the gates, and swarmed around the security personnel who ran to get their weapons, making it impossible for them to defend the ambassador and other personnel trapped inside.




In his latest offering, conservative Australian cartoonist ZEG is pretty disturbed by the Marijuana legalization in Colorado


For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)


Sunday, January 05, 2014

The DOJ’s Curious Foray Into the 'Knockout Game' Fray

The first assailant worthy of federal hate crime charges is a white Texan?

Twenty-seven-year-old Conrad Barrett of Katy, Texas has been charged with a hate crime by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for allegedly targeting a 79-year-old black man as his “knockout game” victim. The victim suffered two jaw fractures in the November 24 assault. “Suspected crimes of this nature will simply not be tolerated,” said Kenneth Magidson, the U.S. attorney for the southern district of Texas. “Evidence of hate crimes will be vigorously investigated and prosecuted with the assistance of all our partners to the fullest extent of the law.”

According to the complaint filed by the DOJ, Barrett recorded a cell phone video of the attack in which he remarked, “the plan is to see if I were to hit a black person, would this be nationally televised.” The complaint also states that Barrett allegedly showed the video to other people and that other videos contained on the cell phone confiscated by police included Barrett using the n-word and insisting that black Americans “haven't fully experienced the blessing of evolution.”

As a result, Barrett has been charged with one count of violating the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act. If convicted, he will be facing a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. “It is unimaginable in this day and age that one could be drawn to violently attack another based on the color of their skin,” said Special Agent in Charge Stephen Morris of the FBI's Houston office. “We remind all citizens that we are protected under the law from such racially motivated attacks, and encourage everyone to report such crimes to the FBI.”

There is no question that the assault attributed to Barrett was heinous and likely motivated by racial animus, but the Washington Times addresses the other issue that is undoubtedly on the minds of many Americans. “The 'game' has spawned a fierce debate since many of the reported victims have been white and their assailants have been black, but hate crimes charges have been all but non-existent,” the Post states.

Although there have been several incidents in which it would seem apparent that racial hate was a motivating factor – especially when one considers that other nicknames used to the describe the knockout game are “polar bearing" or "Get the Jew" – an extensive Internet search by this writer failed to turn up a single other incident where the U.S. Department of Justice pursued hate crime charges against anyone allegedly involved in the knockout game.

Not that it would have been impossible to do so. As New York City Police have noted, there have been eight knockout game attacks in Brooklyn, some of which are being investigated as hate crimes by city authorities. All of the suspects are black teens. Twenty-eight-year-old Amrit Marajh was actually charged with harassment as a hate crime by New York authorities for punching a 24-year-old Orthodox Jew.

And those are just recent incidents. According to the DOJ complaint filed against Barrett, there have been knockout game incidents going back as far as 1992. A study conducted by the Department of Justice's Bureau of Justice Statistics asserted that more than 250,000 Americans over the age of 12 are victims of hate crimes every year, of which one third are reported. That means there are 83,000 reported hate crimes per year. If one ten-thousandth of one percent of those hate crimes involved some version of the knockout game, the Eric Holder-led DOJ would have had at least 41 other opportunities to pursue federal hate crime charges during the five years the Obama administration has been in charge.

"The 'knockout game' – and the media underreporting of it – combines the breakdown of the family with the media's condescending determination to serve as a public relations bureau for blacks," contends black American columnist Larry Elder. Elder points out that both National Public Radio and the New York Times have labeled such incidents as overblown. He further notes that, following an incident where 30-40 black youths and adults attacked three white girls in Long Beach, CA – with eyewitnesses reporting the mob yelling, "We hate white people, f— whites!” as it occurred – NPR didn't report the incident for a month. When they did, it was used to question “whether blacks, given America's history of racism, can even commit a 'hate crime,” Elder explained.

Americans would be disturbed to learn how those in charge of the DOJ would answer the above question.

For instance, upon taking office, former head of the DOJ's Civil Rights Division, Thomas Perez, declared that the department's mission would be to focus on legal activism on behalf of minority groups, including illegal immigrants, “people of color” and Muslims, among others.  As Byron York wrote of Perez's appointment at the time:

He is promising a huge increase in prosecution of alleged hate crimes. He vows to use “disparate impact theory” to pursue discrimination cases where there is no intent to discriminate but a difference in results, such as in test scores or mortgage lending, that Perez wants to change. He is even considering a crackdown on Web sites on the theory that the Internet is a “public accommodation” as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

DOJ whistleblower J. Christian Adams has extensively documented the level of poisonous ideology that has infected the department under the direction of Eric Holder, who has turned the agency into a lawless tool of racial politics.

Take, for example, the gang of 30 rampaging individuals who terrorized the Iowa State Fair in 2010. Eyewitnesses reported that they were yelling it was “beat whitey night,” while they roamed the grounds looking for people to attack. A similar incident occurred at the 2011 Wisconsin State Fair in Milwaukee, where eyewitnesses also identified a mob that injured several people as “young African American teens.” The DOJ didn't even investigate either incident, much less pursue hate crime indictments. Contrast this with the DOJ's role in helping to organize the racial lynch-mob calling for George Zimmerman's head in 2012 over false charges of law enforcement racism. According to Holder, the DOJ is still considering ways to charge the acquitted Zimmerman.

If the Barrett case were the beginning of a trend of the DOJ equitably prosecuting these brutal and senseless crimes as hate crimes, then that would be all well and good. However, the notion that the DOJ's newfound interest in prosecuting this particular type of violence is colorblind remains doubtful. A Department led by a man who dismissed America as a “nation of cowards” because we wouldn't have a “national conversation on race,” even as his efforts to pursue selective, race-based justice has been chronicled by a former insider, no longer gets the benefit of the doubt.



The War on Poverty at 50

In his State of the Union address on Jan. 8, 1964, President Lyndon Johnson declared a "war on poverty." Today, with roughly the same number of people below the poverty level as in 1964 and with many addicted to government "benefits," robbing them of a work ethic, it is clear that the poor have mostly lost the war.

In 1964, the poverty rate was about 19 percent. Census data from 2010 indicates that 15.1 percent are in poverty within a much larger population.

The lack of government programs did not cause poverty, and spending vast sums of money has not eliminated it.

A policy analysis by the Cato Institute found that federal and state anti-poverty programs have cost $15 trillion over the last five decades but have had little effect on the number of people living in poverty. That amounts to $20,610 per poor person in America, or $61,830 per poor family of three. If the government had sent them a check they might have been better off.

As Robert Rector and Jennifer Marshall have written for The Heritage Foundation, "President Johnson's goal was not to create a massive system of ever-increasing welfare benefits for an ever-larger number of beneficiaries. Instead, he sought to increase self-sufficiency, enabling recipients to lift themselves up beyond the need for public assistance."

Johnson sounded conservative when he said, "(We) want to offer the forgotten fifth of our people opportunity and not doles."

Unfortunately, the war on poverty neglected a key component: human nature. Substantial numbers of people came to rely on government benefits and thus lost any sense of personal responsibility. Teenage girls knew they could get a check from the government if they had babies and so they had them, often more than one. The law discouraged fathers from living with, much less marrying, the mothers of their children and so legions of "single mothers" became the norm, and the lack of male leadership in the home contributed to additional cycles of poverty, addicting new generations to government.

When President Clinton signed the welfare reform bill in 1996, liberals screamed that people would starve in the streets. They didn't. Many got jobs when they knew the checks would cease.

Over time, government enacted rules to prevent churches and faith-based groups from sharing their faith if they wanted to receive federal grants, thus removing the reason for their success. These groups, which once were at the center of fighting poverty by offering a transformed life and consequently a change in attitude, retreated to the sidelines.

In public schools, values that once were taught were removed because of lawsuits and the fear of lawsuits, creating a "naked public square" devoid of concepts such as right and wrong, with everyone left to figure it out on their own.

There are two ways to measure poverty. One is the way the Census Bureau does, by counting income earned by individuals and families without including government benefits. The other is not measurable in a statistical sense. It is a poverty of spirit. People need to be inspired and told they don't have to settle for whatever circumstances they are in. This used to be the role of faith-based institutions, and it can be again if they refuse government grants and again reach out to the poor.

One condition for maintaining tax-exempt status should be for these faith-based institutions to help people get off government assistance and find jobs, becoming self-sufficient. If people need transitional money for daycare or transportation, it can be provided, either temporarily by government or by the thousands of churches, synagogues and other faith-based groups.

There is no undiscovered truth about the cure for most poverty: Stay in school; get married before having children and stay married; work hard, save and invest.

The "war on poverty" can be won, but it must be fought with different weapons, not the ones that have failed for the last half-century.



ObamaCare: Some Things Never Change

It seems that 2014 will be the same as 2013 in at least one respect: The Obama White House will keep lying to us, particularly about its crowning “achievement,” ObamaCare. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius claimed on Tuesday that, as of Dec. 28, “2.1 million people have enrolled in a private insurance plan” via ObamaCare. Recall, however, that one is not “enrolled” until the first premium is paid, and the administration refused to provide figures on how many people made it through the gauntlet and managed to pay their premium.

According to The Wall Street Journal, “As of Monday, however, only about half of enrollees billed for plans offered by more than 100 insurers in 17 states had paid their first month's premium.” The deadline for paying those premiums has been extended, in some cases as late as Jan. 31.

Moreover, even if 2.1 million are enrolled, that doesn't outweigh the five million policies that have been cancelled because of ObamaCare. That isn't to say that three million people are without insurance; many of those five million rolled into other policies. But it also doesn't diminish the size of Obama's BIG lie that “if you like your plan, you can keep your plan.” Undaunted, the White House spun it this way in an email this week: “Americans across the country have new health insurance that starts today, thanks to the Affordable Care Act.” That's because they lost their old insurance because of the “Affordable” Care Act! No wonder the chief operating officer of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is retiring.

In the end, however, the problem for Democrats isn't the failed website rollout or even the mass cancellations, it's the fact that from here forward every American suffering anything from a hang nail to a heart attack will blame Democrats for wantonly destroying the health care system.




Her depression may be endogenous (psychotic) but it is well understandable as exogenous (a response to difficult external circumstances):  She has no God or church to call on for comfort; No normal relationship that would help her to fit into the world; and Leftist convictions that tell her the world is all wrong. Cumulatively enough to depress most people, perhaps

All of this is part of what Maddow’s suffering from what she calls “cyclical” depression. She told Wells: “One of the manifestations of depression for me is that I lose my will. And I thereby lose my ability to focus. I don’t think I’ll ever have the day-to-day consistency in my performance that something like This American Life has. If I’m not depressed and I’m on and I can focus and I can think through something hard and without interruption and without existential emptiness that comes from depression, that gives me – not mania. But I exalt. I exalt in not being depressed.”

This is not the first time Maddow has candidly discussed her struggles with depression. Earlier this year, she talked to NPR about it, saying that “Ever since I was 11 or 12, I’ve had cyclical depression. That’s something that has been a defining feature of my life as an adult. … When you are depressed, it’s like the rest of the world is the mother ship, and you’re out there on a little pod and your line gets cut and you don’t connect with anything. You sort of disappear. And so it’s not something you can talk-therapy out of. It’s really a chemical thing. You get adrenaline from work, but adrenaline is not a cure.”



For more blog postings from me, see  TONGUE-TIED, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, GREENIE WATCH,  POLITICAL CORRECTNESS WATCH, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC,  AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, and Paralipomena (Occasionally updated) and Coral reef compendium. (Updated as news items come in).  GUN WATCH is now mainly put together by Dean Weingarten.

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)