Monday, September 01, 2014

Forgive yourself for some things...but not all

Seth Godin wrote this blog post today:
Forgive yourself for not being the richest, the thinnest, the tallest, the one with the best hair. Forgive yourself for not being the most successful, the cutest or the one with the fastest time. Forgive yourself for not winning every round.

Forgive yourself for being afraid.

But don't let yourself off the hook, never forgive yourself, for not caring or not trying.

I read this to my daughter Sara over the phone tonight, and it produced some thought-provoking responses from her.

"There's a lot of bad stuff going on in the name of Allah"

Three churches in Columbus, Indiana get vandalized with citings of verses from the Quran. Read about it and watch a video here.

Thanks to Instapundit

Obliterate them!

Roger L. Simon does have a strategy for dealing with the Islamic State: obliterate it! And while we are at it, also obliterate
Hezbollah, Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood, al Qaeda, al Nusra, and on and on. Sunnis and Shiites? Don't take sides. Let them obliterate each other.

And most importantly of all, we should reinstate the economic boycott of Iran even more tightly than it was before while informing the bloody mullahs and the Iranian people that we support regime change now, not pussy-foot around about it as Obama did when the students were marching in the streets of Tehran (the most morally reprehensible behavior by an American president in my lifetime). We can’t allow the mullahs to profit from our dismantling of ISIS. And if they don’t get the message, use lethal force
Read more here.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Do we hear the screams?

Kathyrn Jean Lopez reflects
on the persecution of Christians and other religious minorities that has been happening throughout the world in numbers higher than ever before in the history of Christianity.

Do we hear the screams? Do we join with the persecuted in the prayers they have led us in? Will we join their witness to the truth about the dignity of every man and woman, of whatever faith or no faith? Will we never again be silent as evil is happening? Or will we be complicit by our silence, distracted rather than living the truth men and women of our day have died and are dying and will die for? Will we sinners strive to be saints and heralds of truth by the very way we live, by what we choose to do and say?
Read more here.

Minneapolis Jihadists

Andrew McCarthy is not the least bit surprised that Somali jihadists from Minneapolis are fighting with the Islamic State. He wrote a whole chapter of his 2010 book The Grand Jihad about Somalis in America, and he reproduces that chapter here.
The palpable fear of American and Canadian investigators is that the young men who leave North America with a jihadist fervor will return as trained, lethally capable terrorists, committed to carrying out terrorist strikes against the West. As David Harris, the former chief of strategic planning for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service starkly puts it, “it is just a matter of time before someone who went abroad comes back to North America in an effort to carry out an attack.”

Better to be thought a fool than to remove all doubt

Michael Ledeen also is writing about Obama's alleged lack of strategy. Like Spengler, Ledeen believes Obama definitely does have a strategy:
The actual strategy is detente first, and then a full alliance with Iran throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

They DO have a strategy, but they prefer to appear indecisive. That’s because the strategy would likely provoke even greater criticism than the false confession of endless dithering.
Obama's strategy
has been on display since before the beginning of the Obama administration. During his first presidential campaign in 2008, Mr. Obama used a secret back channel to Tehran to assure the mullahs that he was a friend of the Islamic Republic, and that they would be very happy with his policies. The secret channel was Ambassador William G. Miller, who served in Iran during the shah’s rule, as chief of staff for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and as ambassador to Ukraine. Ambassador Miller has confirmed to me his conversations with Iranian leaders during the 2008 campaign.

Ever since, President Obama’s quest for an alliance with Iran has been conducted through at least four channels: Iraq, Switzerland (the official U.S. representative to Tehran), Oman and a variety of American intermediaries, the most notable of whom is probably Valerie Jarrett, his closest adviser. In recent months, Middle Eastern leaders reported personal visits from Ms. Jarrett, who briefed them on her efforts to manage the Iranian relationship. This was confirmed to me by a former high-ranking American official who says he was so informed by several Middle Eastern leaders.

The central theme in Obama’s outreach to Iran is his conviction that the United States has historically played a wicked role in the Middle East, and that the best things he can do for that part of the world is to limit and withdraw American military might, and empower our self-declared enemies, whose hostility to traditional American policies he largely shares.

It is exceedingly unlikely that Mr. Obama will do anything that would threaten Assad’s rule or Iran’s power. To do so would be tantamount to abandoning his core strategy of creating a U.S.-Iranian alliance that would make Tehran the major regional power and Washington a friendly kibbitzer and adviser.

It is even more unlikely that Mr. Obama and his spokespeople will confess to actually having a strategy, because of the political firestorm that would result. Better to be thought a fool than to remove all doubt, after all.
Read more here.

Obama does have a strategy!

David P. Goldman (Spengler) writes:
Obama’s “we-don’t-have-a-strategy” gaffe was so egregious as to distract attention from the fact that he does indeed have a strategy, which has blown up in his face. His strategy is accommodation with Iran at all costs. As I wrote earlier this month, our ISIS problem derives from our Iran problem: Bashar Assad’s ethnic cleansing, which has displaced 4 million Syrians internally and driven 3 million out of the country, was possible because of Iranian backing. The refugee flood in Iraq and Syria gives ISIS an unlimited pool of recruits. Iraqi Sunni support for ISIS, including the participation of some of Saddam Hussein’s best officers, is a response to Iran’s de facto takeover of Iraq.

It may be entirely academic to argue that America should bomb not only ISIS, but also Iran’s nuclear facilities and the bases of its Revolutionary Guards. No Republican candidate I know is willing to argue this in advance of elections. Nonetheless, I repeat what I wrote Aug. 12: “The region’s security will hinge on the ultimate reckoning with Iran.”

On Canada’s Sun TV earlier today, commentator Ezra Levant asked me what Obama will do now. My guess is: very little. The reported Egyptian-UAE attack on Libyan Islamists is a harbinger of the future. Other countries in the region will take matters into their own hands in despair at American paralysis. Russia and China will play much bigger roles. And the new Thirty Year War will grind on indefinitely.
Read more here.

Where big government liberalism has come crashing to the ground

Remember the international outrage when Boko Haram abducted hundreds of girls into slavery? Mike McNally writes:
In the last few days we’ve learned that something of only a slightly lesser order of magnitude happened not in Africa but in Rotherham, a former steel and mill town in the north of England. The abuse continued for 16 years, and the perpetrators were not some elusive and heavily armed terrorist group who threatened to kill their victims at the first sign of a rescue attempt, but ordinary members of the local Muslim community.

Other than the starkly different locations and the fact that Boko Haram is a recognized terrorist group, the notable difference between the two episodes is that the Nigerian schoolgirls were black, and the Rotherham abuse victims were white.

The horrific details of the Rotherham “grooming” scandal were laid out in a report published by Professor Alexis Jay, a former senior social worker. Professor Jay wrote: “It is hard to describe the appalling nature of the abuse that child victims suffered. They were raped by multiple perpetrators, trafficked to other towns and cities in the north of England, abducted, beaten, and intimidated.”

Rotherham is the most extensive case to emerge, but it’s thought the problem is even more widespread, with perhaps thousands more girls being abused by predominantly Muslim men of Pakistani extraction across Britain.

In every case the same explanation for official inaction is offered: no one wanted to look too closely into complaints against “Asian” men because they were afraid of being accused of racism, and because they were concerned about the effect of arrests and prosecutions on “community cohesion.” The fact that most media reports still describe the offenders as “Asian” rather than as Pakistani Muslims is itself a disgraceful evasion, and one which the north of England’s Chinese, Hindu and Sikh communities no doubt resent.

The scandals can also be blamed in part on the modern left’s contempt for the white working classes. Most of the time leftists do a good job of concealing it, affecting deep compassion for the “underclass” when it’s useful for demonizing conservative opponents and winning votes. Every now and then, however, the mask slips, as in 2010 when then Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown described a voter in Rochdale, scene of the 2012 abuse scandal, as a “bigoted woman” after she expressed concerns over immigration. And in Rotherham it isn’t just a case of the mask slipping; the entire facade of big state liberalism has come crashing to the ground.

The “grooming” scandals are a direct and inevitable consequence of the left’s failed experiment with multiculturalism and mass immigration, and its obsession with political correctness and “diversity.” I make no apologies for trotting out this quote again, but a former advisor to Tony Blair, whose New Labour government imposed multiculturalism and political correctness on Britain with religious zeal starting in 1997, has admitted that Labour championed mass immigration, including from Pakistan, in order to “rub the Right’s nose in diversity.”

With Islamic State terrorists on the march in Syria and Iraq, we in the West are again being told that the battle against Islamic extremism will be a “multi-generational” one. That’s true, but the West also needs to embark on another campaign that will be just as long and difficult — against the failed and dangerous forces of modern liberalism that force us to fight Islamist evil, whether in Tikrit or Rotherham, with one hand tied behind our backs, if we’re permitted to fight it at all.

It’s too much to expect that liberalism will be chastised by its latest setback, but at the very least the progressive ideas that created the conditions for the Rotherham scandal should be thoroughly discredited. More pressingly, every one of the hundreds of leftist ideologues and statist functionaries responsible for Rotherham should be named and shamed, and their careers and reputations ruined as thoroughly as the young lives of the girls they failed.
Read more here.

Will Britain end mass Muslim immigration?

Mark Steyn on the child sexual abuse scandal in Britain:
In essence, the entire establishment of a South Yorkshire town accepted that the cultural mores of Islam superseded whatever squeamishness they might otherwise have about child rape.

So now, in the new multiculti Britain, the child sex trade is back, as part of the rich, vibrant tapestry of diversity - along with Jew-hate, and honor killings, and decapitation porn. The solutions to the internal contradictions of multiculturalism are (a) David Cameron's expanded security state; (b) Afsun Qureshi's universal prostration before Islam; or (c) an end to mass Muslim immigration. The last is too obvious for any viable western politician ever to propose it.

That leaves Wilberforce's "reformation of manners" - on a scale he never contemplated, and with a self-segregating community extremely resistant to outside influence. Meanwhile, leaders such as David Cameron keep hoping that somehow all these excitable young men with their surplus energies will embrace "British values", without ever being able to say what these "British values" are, other than the stuff Yorkshire schools teach as the source of all the evils in the world - imperialism, racism, colonialism, etc. And even as we dither, in Rotherham and elsewhere, Islam is already reforming our manners. As I wrote the other day, slowly, remorselessly, we are becoming them.
Read more here.

Look for loyalty

Ian Ironwood celebrates 23 years of marriage, and identifies his wife's most important quality: loyalty.

Culture of shame



This beautiful British-Pakistani woman is speaking out about the sexual abuse of girls in Britain. Ruzwana Bashir was victimized by a neighbor starting at age ten. She identifies four immediate steps Britain needs to take to address the problem:
First, we need better training of social workers and police to effectively identify victims. The Rotherham report cited that one of the reasons for the widespread under-reporting of abuse among minority communities was the authorities’ focus on communicating with male leaders, who ignored the problem. Women and girls need to be included in these conversations, and government officials need to broaden the scope of their inquiries.

Second, we need mandatory reporting by people of authority when they signs of potential sexual abuse. One of the most damning parts of the Rotherham report was that schoolteachers were discouraged from reporting potential cases. For Sara, mandatory reporting by doctors serving young children could have saved her years of abuse.

Third, we need improved support for victims when they come forward. Sara’s case has been drawn out for far longer than expected, during which time she has faced pressure to withdraw her testimony. She has been passed from one counsellor to another, and struggled to get the help she needs to overcome her trauma. We need a judicial process that recognises the cost of delayed prosecutions for victims and better counselling services.

Fourth, we need a single person in each community who is accountable for ensuring these and other relevant policies are implemented. There are a lot of people with partial responsibility for this problem, but for this to be an effective, coordinated, comprehensive response, we need one individual who takes full responsibility for ensuring child sex exploitation is addressed and who can be held accountable for real change.
Read more here.
Thanks to Instapundit

What was in the future one year ago?

A Facebook friend of Glenn Reynolds writes Glenn the following, but does not want credit. One year ago on Labor Day 2013 these things had not happened:
the Chinese ADIZ, the Russian annexation of Crimea, the rise of ISIS, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the fall of Mosul, the end of Hungarian liberal democracy, the Central American refugee crisis, the Egyptian-UAE attacks on Libya, the extermination of Iraqi Christians, the Yazidi genocide, the scramble to revise NATO’s eastern-frontier defenses, the Kristallnacht-style pogroms in European cities, the reemergence of mainstream anti-Semitism, the third (or fourth, perhaps) American war in Iraq, racial riots in middle America, et cetera and ad nauseam.

All that was in the future just one year ago.
Read more here.

"He's anything but frail!"

Arthur M. Lewis may be elderly, but criminals are learning the North Palm Beach man is no easy mark.

The 89-year-old decorated World War II veteran foiled an armed robbery attempt Saturday afternoon at his Lake Park jewelry business that left a 44-year-old suspect with six gunshot wounds, but no loot.

Lewis was working behind the counter at The Jewelry Exchange at 900 N. Federal Highway when he was approached by a gun-wielding man around 3 p.m., according to an arrest report from the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office. Lewis said he immediately grabbed the suspect’s revolver and pulled out a .38-caliber handgun from his own pocket.

The two men wrestled for several minutes and fired shots at each other. Despite battling someone half his age, Lewis got the best of it. A man identified by the sheriff’s office as Lennard Patrick Jervis, a Miramar resident, was shot six times by Lewis, including four times in the chest. Lewis’ left arm was grazed by a bullet, but he was otherwise unscathed.

“People think because he’s 89, he’s frail,” said Vivien Bresnahan, Lewis’ girlfriend. “That irritates me because he’s anything but (frail).”
Read more here.

You can watch an interview with this affable man here.

More like a helicopter than a bike

Maybe when my son Jon sees this he will ditch his plans to buy a dirt bike.



Thanks to Instapundit

Shorts bunching up

Rick Tosches writes:
The University of Colorado at Boulder has certainly generated its share of controversy.

Rampant pot smoking. A party school image. A philosophy department accused of sexual harassment. The soaring cost, now pegged at $156 million, of athletic facilities upgrades.

And most recently, a campus appearance by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who talked about troubling student debt. (Having a Democratic leader pontificate about debt is not unlike having a member of the Denver Sheriff Department lecture us on the importance of being kind to people.)

So, with such a full plate, the school's leaders spent nearly a year in discussions about a major campus issue: whether to rename dormitories with Arapaho names Houusoo Hall and, my personal favorite, Nowoo3 Hall.

The whole thing makes me cra76zy, as I'm sure it does you^&4uuu.

Last November the Boulder Campus Planning Commission recommended this terrific idea of honoring American Indians by giving Arapaho names to CU buildings where teenagers drink, smoke weed and have sex.

The commission OK came after some faculty members said the proposed names are taken directly from the Arapaho/Hinono'ei language and using any other spellings for the Boulder campus buildings would be culturally insensitive.

There was precedent for CU's plan. The University of British Columbia, and I am not kidding, has the Xwi7xwa Library, which leads to the obvious question: Can you major in wolverine trapping and pelt-trading, or do you have to pick one or the other? And at prestigious Stanford, there is — and again, I am not kidding — the Muwekma-Ta-Ruk Residence Hall.

Alas, this month CU announced its plan to name dorms Houusoo Hall and Nowoo3 Hall had been scrapped and the new plan calls for them to be named Little Raven and Niwot halls.

Which will, of course, make the Native Studies tenured faculty members' shor88ts bu9nch up3.
Read more here.

GMOs are the answer for sustainable food production

This fall Coloradans will be voting on a proposition requiring labeling of every product that has beenp roduced with genetic engineering. Krista Kafer is a local talk show host I listen to, an organic gardener, and a person who will vote no on Proposition 105:
This fall, as I reap the produce of my organic garden, I will be voting "no" on Proposition 105, the genetically modified organisms (GMO) labeling initiative on the ballot in Colorado. I have researched ways to produce food with fewer chemicals and less water, and have determined that GMOs are the answer for sustainable food production. Requiring food to be labeled "Produced With Genetic Engineering" will unfairly stigmatize GM crops and food processed from GM ingredients.

The time it takes to create desirable traits in plants was drastically reduced beginning in the 1980s when scientists began to insert beneficial genes directly into plant species. After being introduced to commercial agriculture in the 1990s, farmers have been increasingly switching to GM products because they require fewer "inputs" such as water, herbicides or pesticides while generating greater harvests. GM sweet corn, for example, protects itself from insect predation and thus does not need to be sprayed with insecticides. GM herbicide-tolerant sugar beets allow farmers to more easily eradicate weeds thus preserving water and nutrients for crops.

Even though GM technology is helping mankind grow more nutritional food on smaller acreage, with less water, and fewer chemicals, no one should be forced to eat such food. They can buy organic. Also, companies that produce goods that do not use GM crops are free to label their products thusly. In fact, Ben & Jerry's is in the process of sourcing all of its ingredients from non-GM crops. This voluntary business decision will no doubt boost sales among those for whom genetic modification is a concern.

The forced labeling approach of Proposition 105 is not about providing information but provoking fear and ultimately stopping scientific progress.
Read more here.

Labor Day tomorrow: what should be our goal?

Former Colorado Governor Dick Lamm writes today in the Denver Post:
Our Labor Day goal should be to get Americans to work, not to import a limitless supply of cheap labor from the Third World.

Immigration transfers wealth. Immigration takes from U.S. workers and transfers that wealth to U.S. employers of immigrants. Harvard economist George Borjas estimates that immigration costs American workers $402 billion annually in reduced wages and, not surprisingly, gives a similar gain to U.S. employers of immigrants.

One of America's dirty little secrets is the meteoric rise in American workers not in the labor force. In the year 2000, the United States had 40 million employment-age workers not in the labor force. As of July 2014, we have 92 million. America obviously has too many ways to avoid the world of work and too many ways for employers to avoid tapping into that vast reservoir of manpower.

How long is this vast number of underutilized Americans going to stay quiet? What is the cost of carrying these potential workers to the taxpayers? Employ an unemployed American and you put someone to work and reduce taxpayer costs. Import an unskilled immigrant and it costs American taxpayers about $100,000 in social costs over their lifetime, even if the immigrant is working, according to the National Academy of Sciences.

Andrew Sum of Northeastern University found that between 2008 to 2010, 1.1 million new migrants entered the U.S. and landed jobs, even as U.S. household employment declined by 6.26 million over that same period. Isn't there something wrong with that picture?

We have room for some immigrants, but they should be selected for their skills and talents and what they can do for our economy. Highly skilled immigrants increase the productivity of their fellow workers with "human capital spillover." But America, unlike other immigrant-receiving countries, (see chart) continues to minimize the number of immigrants we take for their skills and talents and gives a preference to "family reunification."

American capitalism and ingenuity has been a job-producing machine, but for the last decade we have been bringing in immigrants faster than our economy can produce jobs, thereby hurting American workers. The more people competing for existing jobs, the lower the wages. That should not be our goal this or any Labor Day.
Read more here.

Equipping police and local sheriff's departments in remote rural areas to go to war

For thirteen years I owned a business in Durango, Colorado, one of the nation's most scenic spots. Prior to owning the business, I was the Director of Human Services there and in its high country neighbor, San Juan County. So anytime Durango is in the news, it gets my attention. This week the Denver Post has a column by Jonathan Thompson about the militarization of rural police departments, including Durango's.

What is crime like in Durango? I chuckled at Thompson's research into a recent week's crime blotter
which included reports of: an irate bicyclist on a street corner, an intoxicated man face down in a planter at a Thai restaurant, a landlord harassing a tenant for painting her wall, and a man with a white chihuahua who needed help. Oh, and then there was the bear that broke into a car and stole some trail mix.

And yet, over the past several years, La Plata County’s law enforcement agencies have received over 5,000 battlefield-tested items from the Department of Defense, including (but certainly not limited to): at least 100 bayonet knives, three ordnance- and explosive-disposal robots, 18 5.56 mm rifles (M16s), five 7.62 mm rifles (M14s), 15 .45 caliber pistols, 30 bipods for machine guns, four night vision sniper scopes, two exercise bikes and a Cat-1 MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle (MRAP).

Thompson understands why the cops want armor:
That law enforcement officers are afraid is understandable. The sale of assault rifles and ammunition has escalated in recent years, meaning there are more, increasingly deadly weapons out there that could be used against cops. And as the Cliven Bundy debacle in Nevada demonstrated, some members of the public are perfectly willing to wield those weapons to stop law enforcement from doing their jobs. No wonder the cops want armor.

After reviewing the weaponry gained by rural law enforcement agencies throughout the west, Thompson concludes:
I understand the need for law enforcement agencies to protect their own. If the Pentagon’s giving this stuff away, why not take it? Because if they have it, they may be tempted to use it. Besides, there’s something wrong with local cops and deputies decking themselves out as if they are fighting insurgents in the dusty streets of Kandahar. It sends out a disturbing message, that your neighborhood cop is not a keeper of the peace and enforcer of the laws, but that he is a soldier in a war.
Read more here.

GOP Senator Rand Paul is the only candidate I know who is decrying this militarization of law enforcement. What do you think?

Obfuscater

A Washington Post journalist and his wife are being detained in Iran. Yesterday Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was asked about the detention. This was his answer:
"In our country, there is not a united viewpoint. There are different viewpoints. Institutes and organs have tasks that they carry some actions in their framework."

And you thought our politicians were obfuscaters!

New breakthrough drug for heart patients

"This is a new day" for patients, said Dr. Clyde Yancy, cardiology chief at Northwestern University in Chicago and a former American Heart Association president.

"It's been at least a decade since we've had a breakthrough of this magnitude," said Yancy, who had no role in the study.

What is he talking about? A new drug by Novartis, that doesn't even have a name yet. Marilynn Marchione writes:
Heart failure is the top reason older people are hospitalized, and a leading cause of death. It develops when the heart muscle weakens over time and can no longer pump effectively, often because of damage from a heart attack. Fluid can back up into the lungs and leave people gasping for breath.

The new drug is a twice-a-day pill combination of two medicines that block the effects of substances that harm the heart while also preserving ones that help protect it. One of the medicines also dilates blood vessels and allows the heart to pump more effectively.
Read more here.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Is it better to have no strategy or a delusional strategy?

Andrew McCarthy asks:
Is it better to have no strategy or a delusional strategy?

The question arises, of course, after President Obama’s startling confession on Thursday that he has not yet developed a strategy for confronting the Islamic State, the al-Qaeda-rooted terrorist organization still often called by its former name, ISIS – an acronym for the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham. Al-Sham refers to Greater Syria.

You may have noticed that President Obama calls the group ISIL, preferring the acronym that refers to the Levant to the one referring to al-Sham. After all, anything that invokes Syria might remind you of red lines that turned out not to be red lines and the administration’s facilitation of the arming of “moderate rebels” who turned out to include, well, ISIS. The fact is that the president has never had a Syria strategy, either — careening from Assad the Reformer, to Assad the Iranian puppet who must be toppled, to Assad who maybe we should consider aligning with against ISIS — ISIS being the “rebels” we used to support in Syria . . . unless they crossed into Iraq, in which case they were no longer rebels but terrorists . . . to be “rebels” again, they’d have to cross back into Syria or cruise east west to Libya, where they used to be enemy jihadists spied on by our ally Qaddafi until they became “McCain’s heroes” overthrowing our enemy Qaddafi.

We have several times documented here that influential Republicans led by Senator John McCain were champions of Moammar Qaddafi before they suddenly switched sides — along with President Obama — in campaigning to oust the Libyan regime they had only recently treated (and funded) as a key American counterterrorism ally. The resulting (and utterly foreseeable) empowerment of Islamic supremacists in eastern Libya directly contributed to the Benghazi Massacre of four Americans on September 11, 2012; to the rise of the Islamic State and the expansion of al-Qaeda franchises in Africa, all of which were substantially strengthened by the jihadist capture of much of Qaddafi’s arsenal; and to what has become the collapse of Libya into a virulently anti-American no-man’s land of competing militias in which jihadists now have the upper hand.

The disastrous flip-flop was no surprise. When Mubarak fell in Egypt, Senator McCain stressed that the Brotherhood must be kept out of any replacement government because the Brothers are anti-democratic supporters of repressive sharia and terrorism. He was right on both scores . . . but he soon reversed himself, deciding that the Brotherhood was an outfit Americans could work with after all — even support with sophisticated American weaponry and billions in taxpayer dollars. The Brothers were in power because, in the interim, McCain’s good friend Secretary Clinton pressured Egypt’s transitional military government to step down so the elected “Islamic democracy” could flourish. When the Brothers took the reins, they promptly installed a sharia constitution, demanded that the U.S. release the Blind Sheikh (convicted of running a New York–based terror cell in the 1990s), rolled out the red carpet for Hamas (the terror organization that is the Brotherhood’s Palestinian branch), and gave free reign to terrorist leaders — including the brother of al-Qaeda’s leader and members of the Blind Sheikh’s Egyptian jihadist organization — who proceeded to foment the violent rioting at the U.S. embassy in Cairo the same day as the Benghazi Massacre.

There is no excuse for a president of the United States to have no strategy against an obvious threat to the United States. But at least with Obama, it is understandable. He is hemmed in by his own ideology and demagoguery. The main challenge in the Middle East is not the Islamic State; it is the fact that the Islamic State and its al-Qaeda forebears have been fueled by Iran, which supports both Sunni and Shiite terrorism as long as it is directed at the United States. There cannot be a coherent strategy against Islamic supremacism unless the state sponsors of terrorism are accounted for, but Obama insists on seeing Iran as a potential ally rather than an incorrigible enemy.

Moreover, the combined jihadist threat is not a regional one merely seeking to capture territory in the Middle East; it is a global one that regards the United States as its primary enemy and that can be defeated only by America and its real allies. This is not a problem we can delegate to the basket-case governments of Iraq and Afghanistan, or to the “moderate” Syrian “rebels.” Yet the Obama Left’s relentless indictment of American self-defensive action in the Middle East has sapped the domestic political support necessary for vigorous military action against our enemies — action that will eventually have to include aggressive American combat operations on the ground.

We will not defeat our enemies until we finally recognize who they are — all of them.
Read more here.

Our sugar addiction



Kevin Williamson isn't too fond of the barons who run the US sugar industry. Neither am I. Our sugar addiction is ruining us. And the corporations who purport to care so much about us are profiting greatly from our addiction to sugar. Read more from Kevin here.

An aggressor whose moves are shrouded in ­deception.

Uri Friedman asks:
s Russia invading Ukraine? Ask Ukraine, and the answer is yes. Ask Russia, and the answer is no ... ish. Ask the United States, and you'll learn that Russia, since annexing Crimea from Ukraine in March, has been demonstrating a "pattern" of "escalation of aggression." U.S. officials have avoided labeling Russia's "incursions" an invasion, perhaps to dodge the diplomatic and military implications of doing so.

What we know is that there are currently more than 1,000 heavily armed Russian troops in southeastern Ukraine and 20,000 Russian soldiers massed on the border, according to NATO. We know that armored vehicles and military equipment have been rolling into Ukraine from the direction of Russia in the dark of night; that Russian paratroopers were recently apprehended by Ukrainian authorities; that a massive convoy of Russian trucks entered Ukrainian territory without Kiev's consent earlier this month. If you believe the Kremlin and pro-Moscow Ukrainian separatists, the Russian troops in Ukraine are on vacation, the captured Russian paratroopers entered Ukraine "by accident," the Russian government is not directing and arming the rebels battling the Ukrainian military, and the truck convoy was delivering humanitarian aid. Then again, Vladimir Putin once declared that the "little green men" occupying Crimea were local self-defense forces who had gone shopping for Russian military uniforms, only to later admit that they were—surprise!—Russian soldiers.

The question now is whether 20th-century alliances like the EU and NATO, which will both hold major summits on the Ukraine crisis in the coming weeks, are equipped to effectively respond to Russia's enigmatic actions in the region—whatever you call them.
Read more here.

Islamist terrorism not on FBI's national threat assessment report

Bill Gertz tells us that
The FBI’s most recent national threat assessment for domestic terrorism makes no reference to Islamist terror threats, despite last year’s Boston Marathon bombing and the 2009 Fort Hood shooting—both carried out by radical Muslim Americans.

Instead, the internal FBI intelligence report concluded in its 2013 assessment published this month that the threat to U.S. internal security from extremists is limited to attacks and activities by eight types of domestic extremist movements—none motivated by radical Islam.

They include anti-government militia groups and white supremacy extremists, along with “sovereign citizen” nationalists, and anarchists. Other domestic threat groups outlined by the FBI assessment include violent animal rights and environmentalist extremists, black separatists, anti- and pro-abortion activists, and Puerto Rican nationalists.
Read more here.

If you can watch this without getting emotional, there is something wrong with you



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Nothing could wipe that smile off my face!

I think I have posted this one before, but, hey, it is football season, so let's watch it again!



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Did Howie fall in love with Cynthia when she was 18 and secret away that love for 62 years? Or did he nurse the memory of an infatuation that blazed into love once they found each other again?

Want to read an inspiring love story? Go here!



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Awesome!

Watch this 65 yard punt return by my grandson, Cole Rickerson for the Georgetown, Texas Eagles!

Friday, August 29, 2014

B.S. from the White House to the press

From Henry Kissinger's White House Years: When Nixon offered Kissinger the job as National Security Adviser, he told Kissinger he did not trust the State Department, and that he definitely did not trust the C.I.A., whom Nixon viewed as a bunch of elite liberals. Nixon told Kissinger, therefore, that he wanted to run foreign policy out of the White House.

However, on Dec 2, 1968, when Nixon introduced Kissinger to the press, he lied about his intentions, and Kissinger backed him up!

The President and top advisers lying? Whoever heard of such a thing?

"Acerbic"

From Mail Online:
Joan Rivers is 'resting comfortably' in a medically induced coma just hours after she performed a typically acerbic show in Manhattan and joked about her own death.

The 81-year-old comic was rushed from an Upper East Side clinic to Mount Sinai Hospital in critical condition on Thursday morning after she stopped breathing during a routine medical procedure.

A picture of health only the day before, Rivers accepted a bouquet of flowers from a fan as she finished her stand-up performance at around 9.30pm on Wednesday.

The entertainment legend even posed for pictures with a fan on the way out of the Laurie Beechman Theatre, only to suffer respiratory failure less than twelve hours later during surgery on her throat.
Read more here.

ISIS operating on the southern US border

Doug Ross accurately makes the point that Judicial Watch
now occupies the role that regular investigative journalists in the mainstream media play when a Republican is President.

Here is the latest from Judicial Watch:
Islamic terrorist groups are operating in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez and planning to attack the United States with car bombs or other vehicle born improvised explosive devices (VBIED). High-level federal law enforcement, intelligence and other sources have confirmed to Judicial Watch that a warning bulletin for an imminent terrorist attack on the border has been issued. Agents across a number of Homeland Security, Justice and Defense agencies have all been placed on alert and instructed to aggressively work all possible leads and sources concerning this imminent terrorist threat.

Specifically, Judicial Watch sources reveal that the militant group Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) is confirmed to now be operating in Juarez, a famously crime-infested narcotics hotbed situated across from El Paso, Texas. Violent crimes are so rampant in Juarez that the U.S. State Department has issued a number of travel warnings for anyone planning to go there. The last one was issued just a few days ago.

Intelligence officials have picked up radio talk and chatter indicating that the terrorist groups are going to “carry out an attack on the border,” according to one JW source. “It’s coming very soon,” according to this high-level source, who clearly identified the groups planning the plots as “ISIS and Al Qaeda.” An attack is so imminent that the commanding general at Ft. Bliss, the U.S. Army post in El Paso, is being briefed, another source confirms. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) did not respond to multiple inquiries from Judicial Watch, both telephonic and in writing, about this information.
Read more here.

Nothing to mock?

Kyle Smith is aghast that comedy writers find nothing to mock in Barack Obama.
The charter Choom Ganger, confessed eater of dog and snorter of coke. The doofus who thinks the language spoken by Austrians is "Austrian," that you pronounce the p in "corpsman" and that ATMs are the reason why job growth is sluggish. The egomaniac who gave the queen of England an iPod loaded with his own speeches and said he was better at everything than the people who work for him. The empty suit with so little real-world knowledge that he referred to his brief stint working for an ordinary profit-seeking company as time "behind enemy lines." The phony who tells everyone he's from Chicago, though he didn't live there until his 20s, and lets you know that he's talking to people he believes to be stupid by droppin' his g's. The world-saving Kal-El from a distant solar system who told us he'd heal the planet and cause the oceans to stop rising. The guy who shared a middle name with one of the most hated dictators on earth. Nope, nothing there to mock.
Read more here.

"Smaller footprint?"

Putin understands that no one is in charge in NATO, the Iranians understand that they're going to walk through the door to a nuclear weapon, ISIS and China realize no one is in charge. Bret Stephens says there is a meltdown of American foreign policy.

Henry Kissinger saves me from a day at the bureaucracy

I had the day off today, so I decided to renew my license plates. When my number was called, I was informed that I needed to get an emissions test. The last time I got my license plates renewed I was living on the plains in rural Colorado, where the politicians do not require emissions testing. Now I am in the affluent suburb south of Denver, where no one wants to be politically incorrect.

Knowing that these operations were run by the government, which has no competition, I decided to stop by the house and get a book to read from my shelf full of books I had purchased at used book sales, but had never read. I picked Henry Kissinger's White House Years.

Sure enough, the lines at the emission testing station were around the block. I got so engrossed in reading Kissinger's book, that several times I neglected to move my car forward when the line was moving. Later, when I went across town to get my license, I was number 574 in line, I kid you not! The time went fast, as I read about how Kissinger was a loyal friend and admirer of Nelson Rockefeller, and was shocked when Nixon asked him to be his adviser.

Writing this book in 1979, Kissinger writes candidly about Rockefeller and Nixon. Some of his observations about the process of electing politicians are even more true today than they were in the 1970s:
A man who understands the complex essence of the nominating process, as Nixon did supremely, will inevitably defeat a candidate who seeks the goal by emphasizing substance.
Obama v. Romney anyone? One more:
The politics of manipulation may yet be the essence of modern American Presidential politics.

Are we looking for a "less arduous course?"

Henry Kissinger writes in the WSJ:
It is doubtful that claims to legitimacy separated from a concept of strategy can sustain a world order.

And Europe has not yet given itself attributes of statehood, tempting a vacuum of authority internally and an imbalance of power along its borders. At the same time, parts of the Middle East have dissolved into sectarian and ethnic components in conflict with each other; religious militias and the powers backing them violate borders and sovereignty at will, producing the phenomenon of failed states not controlling their own territory.

The challenge in Asia is the opposite of Europe's: Balance-of-power principles prevail unrelated to an agreed concept of legitimacy, driving some disagreements to the edge of confrontation.

For the U.S., this will require thinking on two seemingly contradictory levels. The celebration of universal principles needs to be paired with recognition of the reality of other regions' histories, cultures and views of their security. Even as the lessons of challenging decades are examined, the affirmation of America's exceptional nature must be sustained. History offers no respite to countries that set aside their sense of identity in favor of a seemingly less arduous course. But nor does it assure success for the most elevated convictions in the absence of a comprehensive geopolitical strategy.
Read more here.

Putin: "It's best not to mess with one of the world's leading nuclear powers"



Vladimer Putin appeared at a youth camp near Moscow today dressed in a sweater and blue jeans. Alexei Anishchuk reports for Reuters:
President Vladimir Putin said on Friday Russia's armed forces, backed by its nuclear arsenal, were ready to meet any aggression, declaring at a pro-Kremlin youth camp that foreign states should understand: "It's best not to mess with us. I want to remind you that Russia is one of the leading nuclear powers."
Read more here.

No man there at all?

Bill Whittle delivers his harshest criticism yet of Barack Obama. Aloof, detached, cool, supremely calm and confident? Or, checking out until the fight is over, then basking in the glory, as with Obamacare and the Bin Laden killing? Likewise with the Benghazi disaster, checking out in order to be rested for the next day's glory and adulation in Las Vegas.

A man who campaigns and fund-raises all the time so that he can soak up the rapidly evaporating pools of adulation at the expense of the hard work and late hours needed to actually do his job. What happens when there is no one left to blame, or delegate to? If he is a true, clinical, pathological narcissist, then he will continue to run from criticism, evade responsibility. But the one thing that is unbearable for men like this is to be mocked. He'll check out before that happens. There will be no place to hide.

The drones are coming

Buying those heavy bags of dog food can be a drag. Not in Australia!



The use of drones to deliver goods is mostly banned in the US. Amazon, Dominos Pizza, and now Google have all been experimenting. The Wall Street Journal takes a look at it today:
"I don't know that Google is much better positioned than Amazon or anyone else in terms of technology, but the company has a track record of being influential in terms of policy," said Ryan Calo, a law professor at the University of Washington who studies robotics and privacy.
Read more here.

"Decline by design," or "Islands Disease?"

Obviously, I am one who thinks it is important to read daily what the smart people in the blogosphere are saying about the events in the news. I also think talk radio is important, although my work schedule only allows me to hear bits and pieces.

This morning I was fortunate to be able to listen for a few minutes to Dan Caplis on KNUS in Denver. Dan thinks that although Obama says he has no strategy yet for dealing with the Islamic State, that Obama does have a strategy for America in the world: "decline by design."

Dan was talking with another radio host, whose name I believe, was Chuck Bonniwell. I hope I have spelled his name correctly. Chuck disagreed with Dan. He believes Obama is just lazy, having spent too much time in tropical climates, he must have "Islands Disease."

Which do you think is correct? Or do you have a different theory?

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Seeing what the world looks like without American power

A firm, conditional "No"

Scott Ott has a satirical piece on what would it take for Mitt Romney to make a third run for president in 2016:
Pressed to list the kinds of “circumstances” which might trigger a change of heart, Romney said, “Well, these are such one-in-a-million long-shots that it’s hardly worth discussing, but let’s say I learned that one of the leading GOP candidates got indicted, or…

just couldn’t escape the shadow of his isolationist libertarian father, or
were soft on gun rights, or
actually hugged Obama just before election day in 2012, or
had no previous political experience, or
had thinning hair, or
lost his Senate seat by 18 points, or
had parents born in India or Cuba, or
had leaned toward amnesty for illegal immigrants, or
was related by blood to George W. Bush, or
swelled up like a blowfish since his last campaign, or
used even more hair product than I do.

“That’s what it would take,” Romney said. “Really far out stuff. But, otherwise, the answer is still ‘No’. And that’s a firm conditional ‘No’.”
Read more here.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Employees who make your mission their mission

Which would you rather have, an employee who is compliant, or an employee who feels that some aspect of your company's mission is important, and makes it his or her mission? Seth Godin writes about that here.

"Owning" an NFL team

Seth Godin writes about how football fans want to believe that by purchasing a jersey they actually have an ownership in their team. That sure is true in Colorado, where almost everybody seems to own an "18" jersey (Peyton Manning) or "7" (John Elway). In addition, almost any item you can think of can now be purchased (for a quadruple mark-up) with a Denver Broncos logo on it.

He just couldn't wait to toke up

Australian bus driver crashes into a home, after ingesting synthetic marijuana, morphine, and methamphetamines.

Watch the video here.

Reversing bad memories without using drugs

Scientists studying mice have found that they can switch the mouse’s memory from positive to negative and negative to positive.”
“We found that we can dictate the overall emotion and the direction of the memory.”
Sarah Knapton writes that
this is the first time that scientists have shown which brain circuits are responsible for positive and negative emotions, and reversed them.

Neuroscientists believe they can erase feelings of fear or anxiety attached to stressful events, in a breakthrough which could help treat depression or post-traumatic stress disorder.

Researchers at MIT, US, have discovered which brain circuits attach emotions to memories, and crucially, how to reverse the link.

The research was published in the journal Nature, and you can read more about it here.

War mongering

Doug Ross's Quote of the Day at Larwyn's Linx is from James Taranto:
"Imagine that President Obama, immediately after his re-election, assembled a sort of reverse bucket list--an enumeration of the things he least wanted to do in his second term. What's on the list? By our reckoning the top two entries are obvious: 1. Sign legislation repealing ObamaCare. 2. Go to war in Iraq.

Now imagine that Lois Lerner had never been born and Obama narrowly lost in 2012. Fast-forward to the summer of 2014, and President Romney is facing the ISIS crisis. Romney announces U.S. air strikes in Iraq and demands that other countries cooperate: "From governments and peoples across the Middle East there has to be a common effort to extract this cancer, so that it does not spread."

Is there any doubt this would be contentious as hell? Democrats would denounce Romney as a war monger and accuse him of squandering one of Obama's "great achievements," the successful withdrawal from Iraq, by allowing the situation there to deteriorate so as to provide a pretext for military intervention. War protesters would fill the streets of American and foreign cities. Prominent leftists would denounce Romney--who avoided the Vietnam-era draft thanks to student and ministerial deferments--as a "chicken hawk." Opposition to the new Iraq war would mobilize the left, creating the prospect of a Democratic wave in November."

Who is the jayvee player?

Mark Steyn says it is President Obama.

Since when is telling the truth evidence you’ve stopped thinking?

Jonah Goldberg reviews the recent history of our leaders using or refraining to use the word evil to describe the jihadists.
Is it true? Is the Islamic State evil?

As a matter of objective moral fact, the answer seems obvious. But also under any more subjective version of multiculturalism, pluralism, or moral relativism shy of nihilism, “evil” seems a pretty accurate description for an organization that is not only intolerant toward gays, Christians, atheists, moderate Muslims, Jews, women, et al. but also stones, beheads, and enslaves them.

Who are you saving the word for if “evil” is too harsh for the Islamic State? More to the point,
Please read more here.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

How to defeat the Islamic State

Angelo Codevilla writes about what it take to defeat Islamic State, IS:
The first strike against the IS must be aimed at its sources of material support. Turkey and Qatar are very much part of the global economy—one arena where the U.S. government has enormous power, should it decide to use it. If and when—a key if—the United States decides to kill the IS, it can simply inform Turkey, Qatar, and the world it will have zero economic dealings with these countries and with any country that has any economic dealing with them, unless these countries cease any and all relations with the IS. This un-bloody step—no different from the economic warfare the United States waged in World War II—is both essential and the touchstone of seriousness. Deprived of money to pay for “stuff” and the Turkish pipeline for that stuff, the IS would start to go hungry, lose easy enthusiasm, and wear out its welcome.

Next, the Air War

Striking at the state’s belly would also be one of the objectives of the massive air campaign that the U.S. government could and should orchestrate. “Orchestrate.” Not primarily wage.

Saudi Arabia has some 300 U.S. F-15 fighter planes plus another hundred or so modern combat aircraft, with bases that can be used conveniently for strikes against the IS. Because Saudi Arabia is key to the IS’s existence, to any campaign to destroy it, and to any U.S. decision regarding such a campaign, a word about the Saudi role is essential.
Wahabism validates the Saudis’ Islamic purity while rich Saudis live dissolute lives—a mutually rewarding, but tenuous deal for all.

The IS ideology is neither more nor less than that of the Wahabi sect, which is the official religion of Saudi Arabia, which has been intertwined with its royal family since the eighteenth century, and which Saudi money has made arguably the most pervasive version of Islam in the world (including the United States). Wahabism validates the Saudis’ Islamic purity while rich Saudis live dissolute lives—a mutually rewarding, but tenuous deal for all. But increasingly, the Saudi royals have realized they are riding a tiger. Wahabi-educated youth are seeing the royals for what they are. The IS, by declaring itself a Caliphate, explicitly challenged the Saudis’ legitimacy. The kingdom’s Grand Mufti, a descendant of Ab al Wahab himself, declared the IS an enemy of Islam. But while the kingdom officially forbids its subjects from joining IS, its ties with Wahabism are such that it would take an awful lot to make the kingdom wage war against it.

American diplomacy’s task is precisely to supply that awful lot.

Given enough willpower, America has enough leverage to cause the Saudis to fight in their own interest. Without American technicians and spare parts, the Saudi arsenal is useless. Nor does Saudi Arabia have an alternative to American protection. If a really hard push were required, the U.S. government might begin to establish relations with the Shia tribes that inhabit the oil regions of eastern Arabia.

Day after day after day, hundreds of Saudi (and Jordanian) fighters, directed by American AWACS radar planes, could systematically destroy the Islamic State—literally anything of value to military or even to civil life. It is essential to keep in mind that the Islamic State exists in a desert region which offers no place to hide and where clear skies permit constant, pitiless bombing and strafing. These militaries do not have the excessive aversions to collateral damage that Americans have imposed upon themselves.

Destruction from the air, of course, is never enough. Once the Shia death squads see their enemy disarmed and hungry, the United States probably would not have to do anything for the main engine of massive killing to descend on the Islamic State and finish it off. U.S. special forces would serve primarily to hunt down and kill whatever jihadists seemed to be escaping the general disaster of their kind.

That would be war—a war waged by a people with whom nobody would want to mess. Many readers are likely to comment: “but we’re not going to do anything like that.” They may be correct. In which case, the consequences are all too predictable.
Read more here.

Hamas fires fifteen rockets. Iron Dome takes them all out at once.



Thanks to Ace of Spades

Rebuking a commonly believed myth

Who voted "aye" for the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Mona Charen refreshes our memories:
It’s true that a Democratic president, Lyndon Johnson, shepherded the 1964 Civil Rights Act to passage. But who voted for it? Eighty percent of Republicans in the House voted aye, as against 61 percent of Democrats. In the Senate, 82 percent of Republicans favored the law, but only 69 percent of Democrats. Among the Democrats voting nay were Albert Gore Sr., Robert Byrd, and J. William Fulbright.

The “solid south” Democratic voting pattern began to break down not in the 1960s in response to civil rights but in the 1950s in response to economic development and the Cold War. (Black voters in the north, who had been reliable Republicans, began to abandon the GOP in response to the New Deal, encouraged by activists like Robert Vann to “turn Lincoln’s picture to the wall. That debt has been paid in full.”) In the 1940s, the GOP garnered only about 25 percent of southern votes. The big break came with Eisenhower’s victories. Significant percentages of white southerners voted for Ike even though the Democratic party remained firmly segregationist and even though Eisenhower backed two civil-rights bills and enforced the Brown decision by federalizing the National Guard. They also began to send GOP representatives to the House.
Read more here.

Growing

Nicola Tyrer writes about the changing shape of women:
Anatomically speaking, fat accumulates very easily around the waist. The wasp-waisted Twenties woman would be shocked at the dimensions of today's Amazon.
Read more here.

Not to be outdone, Chateau Heartiste comments:
Feminist concern trolls wonder why men are “dropping out” of the marriage market. Well, you don’t need a degree in human physiology to spot a blubbery, boner-killing trend.
Read more here.

From the Centers for Disease Control:
Measured average height, weight, and waist circumference for adults ages 20 years and over

Men:
Height (inches): 69.3
Weight (pounds): 195.5
Waist circumference (inches): 39.7
Women:
Height (inches): 63.8
Weight (pounds): 166.2
Waist circumference (inches): 37.5

Vote for Democrats, then escape to the suburbs!

Andrew Klavan has a tongue-in-cheek explanation of why blacks keep voting for Democrats.

re
Read more here.

The IRS destroyed Lois Lerner's Blackberry device, too!

Bryan Preston reports:
After Monday’s bombshell about the federal government’s system-wide email back-up system broke, there was yet another bombshell.

The IRS “recycled” — destroyed — Lois Lerner’s hard drive in June 2011, just 10 days after Rep. Dave Camp had sent a letter to the IRS inquiring about the targeting of conservative groups that Lerner knew about and may have orchestrated.

The IRS destroyed Lerner’s Blackberry device, too. Even though there is no suggestion that it ever “crashed,” as the agency claims about her hard drive.

Even worse, the IRS destroyed Lerner’s Blackberry after it knew of the crash, and while the congressional investigation was underway.
Read more here.

Bloody acts of revenge



The video above is thanks to Robert Spencer who lists this as one of ten recent acts of jihad on American soil that most of us have not noticed.

Here is number two.


Number three:
In late July, according to the Los Angeles Times, “a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was convicted Monday of hindering the FBI investigation into the April 2013 blast by hiding Tsarnaev’s backpack from authorities. Azamat Tazhayakov, convicted in federal court on Boston, now faces up to 20 years in prison.”

Number four:

Number five:
In mid-June, a Tampa Muslim named Sami Osmakac was convicted of plotting to bomb a Tampa bar and then blow himself up in a jihad-martyrdom suicide attack in another crowded area of the city. Osmakac said of non-Muslims: “We will go after every one of them, their kindergartens, their shopping centers, their nightclubs, their police stations, their courthouses and everything until we have an Islamic state the whole world.”

Number six:
Ahmed Abassi, according to the New York Post, wanted to derail a New York-to-Toronto Amtrak train. He also discussed with another jihad terrorist “a plot to release bacteria in the air or water to kill up to 100,000 people.” He was also, according to Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara, plotting to “commit acts of terror and develop a network of terrorists here” in the U.S.

Abassi could have gotten 50 years in prison, but he “avoided terrorism charges by pleading guilty in Manhattan federal court to lying on his visa application and to immigration officials when asked why he flew to the United States in 2013.” Consequently, he could soon be a free man. What could possibly go wrong?

Number seven is this dude: Spencer writes:
The Associated Press reported on June 2 that Mufid Elfgeeh, a Muslim businessman in Rochester, New York, “bought two handguns and the silencers as part of a plan to kill members of the U.S. armed forces returning from war as well as Shiite Muslims in western New York.”

AP, anxious as ever to deflect focus away from Islamic jihad, in its lead paragraph here explains that Elfgeeh was plotting to kill troops “as vengeance for American actions overseas.” So why did he want to kill Shi’ites as well? As vengeance for Iran being a bitter enemy of his bitter enemy, the U.S.? Obviously Elfgeeh is a Sunni Islamic jihadist who wants to kill members of groups that he considers to be enemies of Islam. But the AP will never tell

Number eight: Spencer writes:
Virginia: Two Muslims convicted of piracy were ready to launch rocket-propelled grenade at Navy ship

Two Somali Muslims, Mohamed Abdi Jama and Abdicasiis Cabaase, each got over 40 years in prison last May for plotting to shoot a rocket-propelled grenade at the Navy ship Ashland.

They each got sentences slightly longer than 40 years, rather than life imprisonment, apparently because the RPG that one of them was holding was broken and incapable of firing, or because U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson believed that life imprisonment was cruel and unusual punishment. Is firing an RPG at a Navy ship not cruel and unusual punishment for those on the ship?

Number nine is this Minnesotan: Spencer writes:
Also in May, according to KSTP.com, a Muslim woman in Minneapolis named Saynab Abdirashid Hussein got three years of probation for lying to a grand jury about her efforts to raise money for jihad terrorists in Somalia.

“On June 16, 2009,” said the report, “the defendant lied to a United States Grand Jury saying that she did not participate in raising money for the individuals who left Minnesota to fight against Ethiopian troops then present in Somalia assisting with the internationally-recognized Transitional Federal Government of Somalia.” Participate with whom? Where are her partners in this endeavor now? What are they doing? Does anyone know? Does anyone care?

Last, but not least, a man who wanted to bury our God.
Read more here.

Don't hang down your head, Lt.Col. Dooley

Is anyone speaking up for the nine generals who have been
summarily dismissed for no other reason than they are great American military citizens?"
Another military hero, Lt.Col. Matthew Dooley has had his career ruined because he taught a course
telling the truth about Islam that the jihadist enemy finds offensive, or just too informative."

The above quote about Dooley is from attorney Richard Thompson of the Thomas More Law Center, which is representing Dooley.

It's Libya this week

Want to fly to Tripoli? Here is the passenger terminal there.

Photo by Reuters

Felicia Schwartz and Tamer El-Ghobashy write in the WSJ:
The U.S. and four of its European allies on Monday condemned escalating violence in Libya and what they called outside interference in the nation's political crisis, in which Islamist militias are battling for control of the capital.

Who is trying to stop the Islamists?
The New York Times reported Monday that twice in the previous seven days, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates launched airstrikes against Islamist-allied militias. The newspaper quoted American officials as saying that in recent months, teams of "special forces" operating out of Egypt had also destroyed an Islamist camp near the eastern Libyan city of Derna.
Read more here.

At least Sarah Palin knew that there were fifty states

Victor Davis Hanson:
For those who are “shocked” at the present meltdown, of a magnitude not seen since the annus horribilis of 1979, in their defense: Obama certainly did not campaign on a new health-care plan that would force Americans to give up the doctors they liked and their existing coverage, while raising premiums and deductibles, while giving exemptions for insiders and cronies, and while raising the deficit.

Nor did we hear on the campaign trail that Obama would push gay marriage, open borders, near-permanent zero interest rates, six consecutive $1 trillion deficits, and record food-stamp and Social Security disability payouts. He criticized Bush for relatively minor executive orders, suggesting that he would never rule by fiat — as he since has done in matters of Obamacare, immigration law, and environmental regulations. Remember the promise of ending the revolving door and stopping aides from cashing in — and then follow the post-administration careers of Obama’s closest advisers.

Obama promised to halve the deficit — not run up more red ink than almost all prior presidents combined. Indeed, he once as a senator voted against raising the debt limit and blasted Bush for borrowing from China. He once sermonized to us that the presidency is serious stuff, that it entails inordinate personal sacrifice and even a virtual absence of downtime and vacation — and then he became just the sort of president he was critiquing. But those deceptions were simply politics as usual, and it was logical for the hard leftist Barack Obama to try to appear to be a moderate, given that no Northern liberal had won the presidency in the half-century since John F. Kennedy.

The antidote to the great madness of 2008 would have been, instead of focusing on what Obama claimed or hedged, simply to recall what he had done before he ran for president and to notice what he did during the campaign.

Polarization? Partisanship? The National Journal warned us in 2008 that Obama was the most partisan of the 100 U.S. senators. Did we assume that he would revert to something that he never had been?

If Americans find their president ill-informed, there was no record that he was informed in 2008. His gaffes were far more frequent than those of Sarah Palin, who knew there were 50 states.
Read more here.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Hope for pain sufferers

Lauren Nelson posts about a Johns Hopkins study that showed:
A lubricant that doesn’t wash away could ease arthritis pain in knees and shoulders, keep artificial joints working smoothly, and even make contact lenses more comfortable.

Biomedical engineers discovered a way to bind the lubricant to a sticky manmade molecule that then essentially locks it in place on the surface of cartilage and eye tissues.

Scientists have long known that hyaluronic acid (HA) is abundant in the fluid that surrounds joints like knees, shoulders, and wrists.

HA is an important component for naturally lubricating tissues; one form of the biochemical also reduces inflammation and protects cells from metabolic damage.

Diseased, damaged, or aging joints in hips, knees, shoulders, and elbows often have far lower concentrations of HA, presumably because a protein that binds HA molecules to joint surfaces is no longer able to retain HA where it is needed.
Read more here.

Hat tip Instapundit

You light up my life

Yesterday at the local big box store a female shopper took a small lantern off of a shelf. The store's security officer watched her take the item into the women's bathroom. There was some kind of disturbance in the bathroom, and the security officer called the police. When the woman left the store without paying, the police arrested her. At the police department she was scanned. In her vagina was the small lantern which was approximately three inches wide by five or six inches in length, and a crack pipe.

If either Innominatus or Manhattan Infidel are reading this blog post, I am sure they will help us comprehend the accurate meaning of this true story.

I was not present when these events took place, but I have attempted to interview store employees in order to get the facts for the readers of this blog.

"No such thing as Lois Lerner’s missing emails!"

Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch told Fox News today:
A Department of Justice attorney told a Judicial Watch attorney on Friday that it turns out the federal government backs up all computer records in case something terrible happens in Washington and there’s a catastrophe, so the government can continue operating. And they say it would be too hard to go get Lois Lerner’s emails from that backup system.

So everything we’ve been hearing about scratched hard drives…it’s all been a pack of malarkey. They could get these records, but they don’t want to.

And there’s no such thing as Lois Lerner’s missing emails. It’s all been a big lie. They’ve been lying to the courts, to the American people, to Congress. It’s outrageous.

Jennifer Van Laar at IJReview writes,
Mr. Fitton goes on to say, “The Obama administration needs to get on the ball and start retrieving them [the emails], as opposed to stonewalling and continuing to obstruct justice.”

Judicial Watch will be asking the Court for relief on this issue, likely in the form of a court order to produce the emails from the backup system.
Read more and watch the Fox News Interview with Mr. Fitton here.

Update: Here is the Fox News interview with Tom Fitton of Judicial Watch

Thanks to The Washington Free Beacon

Hat tip Cliff Stewart

Something new being born

From Ann Voskamp:
God only allows pain if He’s allowing something new to be born.
Read more here.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

China's problem: Leftover men

Years of the one-child policy and sex determination caused by preference for boys means there are now 20 million more men under 30 than women. By 2040, there will be 44 million such leftover men of marriageable age.

The challenges leftover men pose to China are staggering, linked as they are to a host of rising problems from prostitution, trafficking and sexually transmitted diseases to violence and even ethnic strife, over an increasingly rare resource - women.
Read more here.

A golf game the media did not report

Today I had a quick visit with a friend who works at the famous Castle Pines Golf Club in Castle Rock, Colorado, just down the road from where I work. Guess who recently showed up there for a golf game? Chain-smoking cigarette smoker and Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner, and Golfer-in-Chief Barack Obama! My friend says Obama is not a good golfer. He stood just a few feet away from the two famous golfers. Did you hear or read anything about this? Neither did I!

America's dog days of August

Victo Davis Hanson writes about the dog days of August:
An American journalist savagely beheaded on tape, with more promised to come. The Islamic State rampage. The Gaza war and Hamas’s serial truce violations — and the new neutral U.S. stance with implied disruptions in military support for Israel. The implosion of Iraq, the bloodletting in Syria. Iran full speed ahead on enrichment as the world’s attention turns elsewhere. Putin and Ukraine on the edge of war. Libya bombed again. Egypt in turmoil. Christians being wiped away in the Middle East. Ebola spreading in Africa. China squaring off with Japan. Germany angry at being tapped while tapping others. What exactly happened to Private Bergdahl or the five terrorists who were freed for his freedom?

At least there is calm at home?

Hardly: food, gas, and electricity prices are at near all-time highs; a stagnant economy in “recovery” that for most people outside of Wall Street remains recessionary; government soon to be run by executive orders; the end of any idea of national sovereignty or a southern border; the Ferguson riots and racial explosions revealing an America more divided than at any time since the 1970s; the buffoonish Missouri governor Nixon playing the Katrina role of a now imprisoned Ray Nagin. The alphabet soup of unresolved IRS, VA, NSA, and AP scandals; revolutionary, extra-legal justice meted out to Rick Perry; Benghazi coming back into the news; the little reported on drip-by-drip practical dissolution of Obamacare.

President Obama has not a clue how to deal with these crises.

So wisely he stays among the 1 percent at Martha’s Vineyard and golfs, given that he has recognized that the more that he is out of the public eye, the less he is emptily sermonizing with “make no mistake about it” and “let me be perfectly clear.” And thus the less the public is bothered by his abstract presidency, given the less it must experience it in the concrete. Polls reveal that the less the public sees or hears their iconic president, the less they are bothered by him.
Please read more here.

Due process for terrorists

Andrew McCarthy writes:
When an elitist lawyer like Obama claims the criminal-justice system “works” against terrorists, he means it satisfies his top concern: due process [for the terrorists.]. And on that score, he’s quite right: We’ve shown we can conduct trials that are fair to the terrorists. After all, we give them lawyers paid for by the taxpayers whom they are trying to kill, mounds of our intelligence in discovery, and years upon years of pretrial proceedings, trials, appeals, and habeas corpus.

A successful counterterrorism strategy makes criminal prosecution a subordinate part of a much broader governmental response. Most of what is needed never happens in a courtroom. It happens in military operations against terrorist strongholds; intelligence operations in which jihadists get assassinated — without trial; intelligence collections in which we cozy up to despicable informants since only they can tell us what we need to know; and aggressive treasury actions to trace terror funds.

That is how you stop the homeland from being attacked, which is what we have done for the last seven years. And it is that from which Obama wants to move away.

Obama would bring us back to September 10th America. And September 10th is sure to be followed by September 11th.

Admittedly, that was before Obama empowered the virulently anti-American Muslim Brotherhood; made Islamic supremacists key administration advisors; blinded our national security agents by purging Islamic-supremacist ideology from training materials; colluded with Islamic-supremacist countries to restrict American free speech rights; tried to give civilian trials to enemy-combatant terrorists responsible for mass-murdering Americans; imported enemy-combatant jihadists for civilian trials despite congressional proscriptions; waged an unauthorized war in Libya that enabled our enemies to kill American officials and besiege North Africa and the Middle East; negotiated with Iran-backed terrorists in trading jihadist leaders for the remains of British casualties; negotiated with Taliban terrorists in trading jihadist commanders for a deserter; assured Iran’s acquisition of nuclear arms; issued visas to terrorist operatives for consultations on American foreign policy; sided with Hamas during its latest war of aggression against Israel; and declined to acknowledge that the jihadist mass-murder of 13 American soldiers at Fort Hood was a terrorist attack.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

40-year-old woman wins 10000 meter gold medal in European Athletics Championships 2014



Hat tip Ann Voskamp

Giving



Hat tip to Ann Voskamp

Giving back to those who give



Thanks to Ann Voskamp

Another lesson of the Gaza War



Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn write:
In a bombshell revelation, Dennis Ross, the senior Mideast policy adviser to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton from 2009 to 2011, has admitted that it was he who was assigned the task of pressuring Israel to ease up on its military blockade of Gaza.

“I argued with Israeli leaders and security officials, telling them they needed to allow more construction materials, including cement, into Gaza so that housing, schools and basic infrastructure could be built,” Ross revealed in the Washington Post on August 10. “They countered that Hamas would misuse it, and they were right.”

Not that Hillary’s State Department had been acting independently of the White House on the issue of cement. For example, Vice President Joe Biden told interviewer Charlie Rose on Bloomberg TV in 2010: “We have put as much pressure and as much cajoling on Israel as we can to allow them to get building materials” and other forbidden items into Gaza.

But now that Mrs. Clinton is attempting to distance herself from the president’s debacles in foreign affairs, Ross’ admission shows that it was she who sent her personal envoy to push for a policy that ultimately enabled Hamas to build the terror tunnels.

Israeli officials have long been justifiably concerned about the danger of dual-use items such as cement. On the one hand, cement could be used for innocent purposes such as home construction, in the hands of a peace-seeking, trustworthy government. But in the hands of untrustworthy elements – such as the Hamas terrorist regime that rules Gaza – it could also be used for other purposes. Such as terror tunnels.

It seems Obama and Clinton forgot that Israel is the only country in the world that is threatened with annihilation by a nearby regime rushing to build nuclear weapons. Israel is the only country in the world that, in the space of just 65 years, has been forced to fight four major defensive wars and five smaller ones in order to survive. Israel is the only country in the world whose next-door neighbors have built dozens of tunnels into Israel to perpetrate massacres of civilians.

Today, at least thirty-two terror tunnels later, we know that Clinton, Obama and Ross have been wrong, while Israel is right.

Hamas spent between $1 million and $10 million to build each of those tunnels, using as many as 350 truckloads of cement and other supplies per tunnel, according a report in to the Wall Street Journal, quoting Israeli military officials.

And it is “likely that there are additional tunnels” that the Israelis have yet to uncover, according to the Journal’s report.

Another lesson of the Gaza war: Even as we condemn Hamas’s diversion of cement from the construction of housing to the construction of terror tunnels, let us not forget that it was Hillary Clinton who pushed through the policy that made those tunnels possible.
Read more here.
hat tip Ask Marion

Friday, August 22, 2014

The lucrative business of kidnapping

David Rohde is a journalist who was captured by the Taliban five years ago, and escaped thanks to the help of an Afghan journalist who was captured with him. He writes about what has been a lucrative business:
Last month, a New York Times investigation found that al-Qaeda and its direct affiliates had received at least $125 million in revenue from kidnappings since 2008—primarily from European governments. In the last year alone, they received $66 million.
Read more here.

The biggest victim may be the rule of law

Scott Ott explains the complicated situation in Travis County, Texas in which Governor Perry has been indicted and the Democrat D.A. drives drunk, then makes a fool of herself in the clink.

Just try to avoid slobbering on your shirt

Which method do you use when brushing your teeth? There is no one way agreed to by the experts.

Priceless!

Not only is Andrew Klavan hilarious, but he also happens to be telling the truth!

What are the consequences?

From Judicial Watch:
The law violated by the Obama administration when it secretly exchanged five Guantanamo terrorists for an Army solider captured by the Taliban after deserting his post is punishable by jail, suspension and removal of office, according to written White House rules.

The nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), confirmed this week that the president broke a “clear and unambiguous” law when he swapped the high-level terrorists for Bowe Bergdahl, an Army sergeant who went AWOL in Afghanistan in 2009. According to rules issued by the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) the violation is serious and can carry severe consequences. They include fines, imprisonment, administrative discipline, suspension from duty without pay or removal from office, the rules specifically state.
Read more here.

Could you pass a modern day Social Studies test?

How good are you at Social Studies? Manhattan Infidel has a test to see how much you know and whether or not you know the correct answers. Please hurry over here and take the test. I am sure he is just joking about the consequences of giving the wrong answers.

Warnings from Hagel and Dempsey

Bridget Johnson reports on the Hagel/Dempsey press conference in which we were told that ISIS is no longer the jayvee team.

Selfless service

Gandi in a pantsuit. Hillary Clinton is now taking that which she acquired at public expense, and turning around and selling it to the public. What kind of genes do you have?

Has Allah changed sides?

Michael Ledeen asks:
Why can’t Hamas abide by the ceasefire? Because of the possible consequences of defeat for themselves, the Qataris and the Iranians.

Everybody in the Middle East sees that Hamas lost the latest round in the Gaza War. Its rockets were nullified, its tunnels are largely destroyed, and its top leaders lived shamelessly in luxury hotels far away from the battlefield. It was not only a defeat, but a humiliation, and Hamas now faces challenges to its rule. Sharing power with Fatah is unacceptable — a defeated Hamas would be the junior partner, especially after the revelation that Hamas was organizing the assassinations of Fatah leaders — and turning Gaza over to Fatah would likely doom Hamas.

Finally, there is the big religious issue. Hamas is a fanatical mass movement. As the ayatollahs claim for their own regime in Tehran, Hamas claims divine support for its global mission. Both envisage the triumph of jihad against a decadent, infidel West, with Israel and America their prime targets. Every time they win a battle they proclaim it is a sign of their inevitable triumph: Allah has blessed their efforts and doomed their enemies.

So when they lose, the believers inevitably wonder if Allah has changed sides. When I was in Israel a few days ago, everyone was talking about the miraculous gust of wind that blew a Hamas rocket out to sea, just when, having evaded Iron Dome, it was about to strike a heavily-populated area in Tel Aviv. You can be sure that story has made the rounds of the Middle East…adding to the woes of Hamas and the Iranian regime.

If we had strategists worthy of the name, we’d be whispering to the opposition in Iran and Gaza that it’s time to get out from under these failed tyrants and join the winners. Instead, incredibly, Obama et al stick by their failed vision of joining with Iran in the regional war, and saving Hamas from its well-earned doom.
Read more here.

Where were the parents?

Patricia Dickson asks a question that no one else in the media is asking about the death of Michael Brown: where were his parents?
While we wait for all the facts to come in, can we at least have an honest discussion about the role that parents play in the untimely demise of young men like Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin?

It is clear by the video images showing Michael Brown grabbing a much older and smaller store clerk by the throat that the young man did not have respect for authority. The fact that there was some kind of confrontation with a police officer reveals that this young man had issues with authority. The first authority figure in a child’s life is the parent. If parents do not teach and demand that children respect them, there is a good chance that the child will not respect any other person in authority (e.g., teachers, police, and other adults).

No one in the media dare ask Lesley McSpadden, Michael Brown’s mother, about the video images of her son while she’s making the rounds on all the network shows demanding justice for his death. Sybrina Fulton, Trayvon Martin’s mother, is back on the scene to offer her advice to Brown’s mother. Instead of asking these women some straightforward questions about their role in their son’s behavior that led up to their tragic deaths, the media is portraying them as Mary, the mother of Jesus. Even Brown’s grandfather has been on a network show asking President Obama to meet with him and demanding justice for his grandson.

Where was he when his grandson was stealing cigars from the corner store? With all of these parental figures coming forward, it would seem that someone would have taken the time to discipline this young man. Growing up as a child, my parents told me that they whipped my behind so that the police would not have to. The Bible states in Proverbs 29:15: The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left undisciplined brings his mother to shame.
Read more here.

What is truth?

Two of my favorite human beings discuss what is truth. Bill Whittle says truth is an external condition of what is real. Andrew Klavan points us to the Ultimate Truth, the Light.

Build the border fence!

roger L. Simon urges Republicans to get behind the idea of building a fencealong our southern border with Mexico.
Build a fence across our entire Southern border and do it now. Make it as secure as we can. Spare no expense. Add whatever high tech accoutrements deemed necessary.

Don’t pretend for a minute this is about amnesty — past, future or possible — or immigration — legal or otherwise — or even about murderous drug cartels. Those are minor matters by comparison to a dirty nuke at the Mall of America. It is about the Islamic State and all their myriad clones that change every day but still espouse the same lunatic ideology. If we don’t do everything we can to keep them out, we were are suicidal and just as lunatic as they are.

But we don’t. So maybe we are. But we should sober up fast and do something about it. This should be number one on the agenda of the Republican Party this Fall for every candidate. Make it a cause. Give them all something to agree on, Tea Party, RINOS, whoever. If we can’t agree to save Western Civilization, what can we agree on? I am certain the vast majority of the public will be with us. If they’re not, show them a commercial with Foley’s head being lopped off while Obama heads out to play golf. It’s brutal, but it’s the truth and the public will know it.

And this shouldn’t wait for November. Legislation should be drafted by Congress now, emphasizing border security for the safety of our people. It should be publicized and placed in front of the Senate. Let Harry Reid turn it down, let the Democrats lose and then push the legislation all over again. Don’t stop.

The fact that a jihadi can walk over our border more easily than some of us can cross the street in front of our house is appalling. That we have a government that has permitted that is even more appalling.

Yes, the jihadis may be here already. Indeed many probably are. But we have to start facing it. If we can’t do something as obvious as building a fence, we’re hopeless. We don’t deserve what we have. And, hey, it would even employ some folks who need a job.
Read more here.